Monday, 26 April 2010
Welcome Jannine Cortis-Peska, who is talking promotion, promotion, promotion....
Huge welcome to my blog site, Jannine - your topic is one so close to my heart, it makes me cry just thinking about it....PROMOTION!!!! AARRGHH!! I'm all ears...
First of all, thank you Rachel for having me as your guest today. ;-)
To Promote or Not to Promote.....the small press author's constant dilemma.
When I first started out in e-publishing, I was naive. In 2001 I had a book out in both POD and e-book, the latter fairly new to publishing. In fact, I had no clue what it really was. Needless to say, I didn't know how to get the most out of my promotion of my e-book. I didn't know how to promote period.
Fast forward to 2006 and my journey into e-publishing truly begins. Although in the last three years I've had a short story and three full-length novels e-published (as well as being offered in print, except for the short story), I've only recently--the last year or so--really understood the significance of promoting online. And the rewards of selling e-books as opposed to print; the royalties are higher!
When I have a book released, I set up about 4 blogs and interviews a month, and participate when my publishers have a guest day on various loops. Do my sales soar? In a word, NO. I put a lot of thought into what I blog about and spend a lot of time sending covers, blurbs, excerpts and other information to the loops. It takes away from my writing time, yet I feel it's one of the few ways I can successfully promote. The problem is, there is virtually no feedback from readers. I'll get a few responses from the other authors who are also promoting. But where are the readers? One loop I recently participated on has over 2700 members. I got two responses from my fellow authors? I've gave up on doing chats for the same reason. Only a fellow author or two came by. So why do I continue wasting my time?
For lack of a more efficient way of promoting, it's free and does get out to a large number of readers worldwide. Many other authors feel that even though readers don't join in, they're reading our excerpts and adding our books to their to-be-read list. But how many of those readers actually order our books? Obviously not enough.
One book I had published last year could have had a wide range of readers. It was set in medieval Italy. I did all my promoting as mentioned previously. I also paid for an ad in an Italian American magazine, and had a great review of my book in a national magazine dedicated to the Medieval/Renaissance period. My sales were nowhere near the 100 mark.
I also have bookmarks and other promo items made and send these to writing conferences all over the U.S., Canada and Australia for their goody bags. Still, it's had little effect on my sales. So once again I'm asking myself if all this promo is worth it. I certainly don't make enough money to pay for the promoting I do. And believe me, I can use the money. So why do I trudge along the promo trail with no real gain?
I get to hold my book in my hand, gaze at the cover, flip the pages and see my words on them...... It's self-gratifying. It gives me a sense of accomplishment. Now, if only I can write an erotic romance..... Now there is where the money is.
What about you? Reader or writer, how do you perceive promoting by way of blogs, interviews and all the rest?
I'd like to talk about my medieval psychic-sisters trilogy of which books one and two are presently available. The Sisters of Destiny trilogy started with an idea for a line Kensington had developed called Ballad. I had sent in a proposal to my editor there (who bought my only NY pubbed book). She liked my ideas; unfortunately Ballad was over-inventoried. Then the line folded. This seems to be a pattern with me, but that's another story, lol.
Book one, Carina and the Nobleman, takes place in Northern Italy. Carina is one of three sisters separated at birth, each brought to a different country to be raised. (You'll learn the reason at the end of book three.) She is clairvoyant. Book two, Charlotte and the Gypsy, takes place in a Gypsy camp in Andalusia. Char is clairaudient. I am presently researching book three, Callie and the Knight, which is set in England. Callie is clairsentient.
So far, book two has provided me with the most challenge. Researching Gypsies was actually fun, but their lives were so different from Italians, which I am used to writing about. Thankfully, a friend who is of Gypsy heritage gave me so much inside information, which paid off. I've been told how accurate my characters and the lifestyle was portrayed.
Below are the covers and blurbs for Carina and the Nobleman and Charlotte and the Gypsy. You can read the first chapters on my website: www.jcortipetska.com.
Forced to the streets after her mother dies, Carina Gallo is desperate to survive and find her long lost sisters.
Consumed with locating his missing brother, Count Luciano Ruggero has forsaken his needs.
When Luciano catches beautiful and vulnerable Carina stealing from him, he takes pity and cares for her until she's strong enough to work off her crime. Carina is forever grateful to Luciano, yet fears he will learn of her wicked secret and condemn her to burn.
Will Luciano and Carina find a way to feed the mutual passions they share, or will heresy and obsession with lost family destroy them both?
Available at www.eternalpress.ca
Charlotte Nikolos keenly feels the difference between the dark coloring of the Gypsies who raised her and her own pale hair and skin. When she learns she has two sisters somewhere who share her looks and psychic powers, she's determined to search for her lost family and find answers about her past. But how?
For three years, Rafael Cazares has been away from the Gypsy camp and the woman who makes his blood boil. He's determined to win back Char's trust and recapture her heart. He insists on helping her to find her true family, but someone or something is determined to keep them apart. When a deep dark secret is revealed, Rafael would do everything in his power to keep the only women he has ever loved out of harms way. Even if he must die.
Available at www.moongypsypress.com
Jannine Corti Petska
Assapora la passione (Feel the Passion)
Great post, Jannine - certainly got me thinking about promotion...and Italy!! Feel free to leave your comments, folks!!
Posted by Rachel Brimble at 23:35