Beyond Blogging to Speaking—Book Buzz, Part 7

By the way, happy Appreciate a Dragon Day! 😀

I don’t want to give the impression that the internet is the only way to generate book buzz. It certainly is not.

And before we go any further in this discussion, I think it’s important to make something clear.

The horse is prepared for the day of battle, But victory belongs to the LORD. – Proverbs 21:31

In connection to the book business, I apply that in the writing and in the promotion of my work. I am to prepare the book for readers as best I can, but the last part of the verse is the key. The results belong to the Lord.

I can’t imagine going to battle without first praying about every aspect of what I know to lie ahead, and I see no reason to think a writer should do less. For me, ultimate success would be for God to be glorified in my writing. That is more vital than surviving a life-threatening circumstance. Why wouldn’t I want God’s council, instruction, wisdom, blessing?

My point is, I think prayer is the ultimate and necessary ingredient for book buzz. Not that I think praying will insure my book will become a best seller or any such thing. Rather, if I focus on praying that God will bring the readers He knows are ripe to hear what I’m saying in my story, and that He will show me the means to reach them, then I can be confident in the book buzz steps I take, not looking back and second guessing myself at every turn.

But about those book buzz steps, blogging is only one tool. The most effective other tool I’ve seen is speaking. Of course some people get shivers just reading that word. I understand. Though God called me to be a teacher for thirty years, when I first began the process I had such fear, I couldn’t imagine how I was to get through.

Others think, Well, who in their right mind would want to listen to me, for surely I’m no Liz Curtis Higgs or Beth Moore or John Eldridge.

Both these concerns can be addressed together. The key to overcoming the fear of speaking in public is to speak in public. The doing, and doing often, makes the act seem normal, much like driving (steering a vehicle weighing hundreds of pounds and burning fuel at sixty-five miles an hour beside hundreds of other such vehicles, some with insane eighteen year olds behind the wheel! And this is NORMAL? 😮 Well, yes, it has become so, but that first time? Not so much!)

The key is not to overreach. In other words, the audience doesn’t have to be 50,000 people filling the LA Coliseum or even 200 filling the Mount Hermon auditorium. Rather, why not become available at the local level as a speaker for the Mother’s Day tea? (I know a writer who has done this). Or at the local writers’ group breakfast?

Small groups usually have small budgets and would be thrilled to have a local author, especially if the only cost is that you make your books available for sale. And speaking in front of small groups isn’t really as big a deal as it seemed, especially the third or fourth time through. Trust me! It’s true.

There’s a speaking secret, however, that I am aching to try, that I think will create ready book buzz, at least for a certain audience. But I’ve gone on longer than I should already, so I’ll save that one for tomorrow.

Published in: on January 16, 2008 at 12:39 pm  Comments (2)  
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Creative Blog Buzz—Book Buzz, Part 6

From what I can glean, there is one other powerful attention getter that will have people talking about your books: your creative use of blogging.

This first example I want to share wasn’t started by blogging, however. I’m referring to something I just received word about from Donita Paul:

We are pleased to bring you news that this week on Wednesday, January 16, people around the country will be celebrating Appreciate a Dragon Day! What is this strange holiday, you ask?

Several years ago when DragonSpell first came out, Mrs. Paul was reading a book about how to market your book. One of the suggestions was to register a new holiday. So she registered Appreciate a Dragon Day, or AADD.

Just recently we Googled AADD. SHOCK! It’s all over the place! Mrs. Paul sent emails to many of the people and places that have given it a boost. It was not only a publicity ploy, but something that is dear to her heart: promoting literacy.

Check out the DragonKeeper website’s AADD Event Page to get more details on this interesting holiday and some suggestions on how to celebrate. Some of these ways include making a dragon kite, a dragon cake, a dancing dragon toy, putting on a dragon puppet show, and many more fun ideas!

Of course, if every author ran out and created a holiday tie-in to his book, this would soon get old hat. The key is doing something new.

I was reading over at Michael Hyatt’s blog From Where I Sit, as I regularly do, and from his totally unrelated post about the history of Thomas Nelson Publishers, I got what I think is a new idea for blog buzz. Mr. Hyatt mentioned that Thomas Nelson, Sr., when he first tried to sell his “affordable books for common folks,” had trouble with other booksellers boycotting them. His solution was to hold book fairs.

My thought was, Why not on-line Book Fairs? I mean, several authors could get together and hold such a one day fair, with books discounted and the number limited. Maybe a button could be created, and required to be posted by bloggers for them to be eligible to order books at the fair. Those are just ideas off the top of my head (and I wish I had a book I wanted to buzz about so I could get a fair going. I think it would be fun!)

The thing is, there are lots of ideas out there. If you want to start buzz about your book, think of what unique things connect to your story. Think of actual book events that might be translated into virtual book events. And make them fun, for you and for those you would like to involve. 😀

Published in: on January 15, 2008 at 11:35 am  Comments (6)  
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