24 January 2012, Publication - even more on Speaking and Teaching
Introduction: I realized that I need to introduce this blog a little. I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. The working title was Daemon, and this was my 21st novel. Over the last year, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel.
I'm using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I'll keep you informed along the way.
Today's Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, go to my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select "production schedule," you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.
Here is the list of ideas for advertising--there are more and I'll add to the list as we go along. I'm certainly not an expert in all these, but I've dabbled in all of them. I'll try to relate my experience and the degree of that experience to you.
1. Have a website for your novel.
2. Write a blog.
4. Literary awards.
5. Book cards.
8. Blog tours.
9. Press releases.
10. Speaking and teaching.
13. Book signings.
14. Book trailers
The point is, that to be able to promote your novels, you need to promote the topics within your novels. People seldom are interested in your novel itself (unless you are a best seller). People are instead interested in the topics of your novels and specifically in your expertise in these topics. For example, topics of interest from the novel Aksinya are demons, magic, Bolshevik Russia, WWI, European aristocracy among others. There are many secondary topics in the novel as well.
The secondary topics can be very excellent sources for teaching and talks, for example, the theme of your novel or a location from your novel. I haven't taught these as much, but I did teach a semester's worth of classes on future technology based from my science fiction novels. That is a problem with science fiction novels--they generally aren't as topical as historical novels.
So, have you caught the theme to be effective? For interviews, teaching, or speaking, you need to focus on a topic from your novel(s). People want to learn from your expertise. Now here is an important question, what if you don't have any expertise in the topics of your novel(s)? The answer is simple, you shouldn't have written the novel. Why would anyone read a novel from a writer who doesn't intimately understand the topic of their novel(s). This is an important subject that deserves some discussion.
I'll write more about topics and expertise tomorrow.
I'll repeat my published novel websites so you can see more examples: http://www.ldalford.com/, and the individual novel websites: http://www.aegyptnovel.com/, http://www.centurionnovel.com/, http://www.thesecondmission.com/, http://www.theendofhonor.com/, http://www.thefoxshonor.com/, and http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.