Launching a book is an utter whirlwind. Is it me, or do all authors think their book will launch, and suddenly it takes flight, and you have thousands of reviews, and suddenly you get a call from your publisher letting you know you are a best seller within the time frame of one day? Okay, maybe a week. . . I know that’s not how it works, so I have been hustling more than Jay-Z in the 90s for months. But I secretly hoped—silly author.
I envisioned my launch week on Martha’s Vineyard, the setting of my book, to be a massive success. Lines of people, friends, and family surrounding me and toasting my achievement. Well, life has its own plans. All my friends got or were exposed to Covid. We had to find and move houses; it was blazing hot the day at my signing at Edgartown Books, oh and there was a huge concert on the island that weekend that most everyone was attending. So, I didn’t have lines down the block, but so many wonderful people who mattered came and listened to my talk, bought my book in person, or called the store and sent me beautiful reviews and messages. I couldn’t have been fuller. The moral of the story is always, I guess, to roll with it.
So, what’s the secret sauce to selling books? Is it the writing, luck, a following, or strategy? I think it’s all these things and the planets aligning and God’s parting the heavens, but honestly, I think it’s patience and persistence for most newer or unknown authors. You must be willing to sell yourself, put yourself out there, listen and learn from other authors and do the work. It just seems there is not enough time in the day sometimes, am I right?
I have a great publicity team, but I worked even harder than they did for countless hours a day because it’s my book. I have to believe in it and work for it more than anyone. The reviews are coming in, and blogs, articles, fellow authors, readers, and reviewers are praising my book, but don’t I need more? This is the rollercoaster ride I’ve been on this past week. My publicist, Jessie Glenn from Mind Buck Media, warned me that most authors go through a post-partum period after a book launch. I think she’s right. One day I feel incredibly grateful, honored, and happy; the next, I feel like I’m not doing enough, and maybe I’m not enough. It’s tough, but it’s okay to feel what you feel and ride the wave of emotions like all things.
For today I am taking a breather from the marketing machine. And this week, I am setting my alarm and getting up before the sun to dive back into writing my next book I’ve had on hold for a moment. After all, writers write, and I need to feed my soul. I’ll be marketing too, of course, and a multitude of events are coming, but I am going to remember to breathe, love, live and write.
Do you have any marketing secrets, and are you remembering to breathe and enjoy it all? I’d love to hear. I’m also cutting back my blog to once per month to provide the best content and write the best book! Thank you all for your unwavering support, and don’t forget to review. (here I go again. . .)