Blogger: Michelle Ule
Sitting in for Rachel Kent
By this time, most writers know they are responsible for some marketing if they wish to publish their manuscripts.
But what does that really mean? How much marketing? What do you have to do?
Obviously, it differs by publishers and writers.
Here’s an example of what I did nine months before the release of my biography, Mrs. Oswald Chambers.
First things first
Publishers will be involved with the marketing of your book. They’ve invested resources and want your book to do well.
You should discuss any ideas you have with the marketing department of your publishing house. Many houses will set up a marketing meeting for you well in advance of your publication.
In my case, I met with the marketing department a year before my book will be published, even before I turned in the manuscript.
I had specific questions about my website and what they thought I should do.
My publisher needed to know my plans in advance–and I asked for the meeting to make sure we were aligned with one another.
I turned in my manuscript December 1. I spent the rest of the month catching up with my life and in January began planning my personal marketing ideas.
Marketing Plans: one January day
This is what my day looked like on a day set aside to work on my personal marketing
I started with visiting the gym and praying.
Since I teach Bible study on Tuesday mornings, I also reviewed my lesson plan for the next day. Then I got to work on the following:
Cleared email–which included a reply to a woman in France who will endorse my book.
Edited my newsletter serial stories–for the fifth time.
(Sigh, continued to find errors, despite two other people having read it).
Wrote to people mentioned in my newsletter serial–which runs monthly through 2017. I included copies of the stories in which they appeared and sent emails to Australia, Chicago, Hawai’i, Scotland, Nebraska, England (twice) and down the road in Silicon Valley.
Responded to their replies–thanking them for permission to use their names.
Changed one story for someone who didn’t want to be mentioned.
Thought about newsletter design.
Finished writing a guest blog post: Why You Should Write a Spiritual Memoir.
Wrote a “gift” to go with the blog post.
Away from my desk
During the breaks from my desk, I made dinner, did laundry, ran errands for work and let the dog in and out.
I stopped to discuss newsletter design with my webmistress at her house.
We examined Beacon.by and made a preliminary version of the newsletter story.
She finished a mock up, I reviewed and edited it (again) when I got home and returned it to her.
I updated my list of work items for today and wrote out a list of potential blog posts to write.
All day long, I was dogged by the name of someone I should write and ask to endorse my book.
I’ve been praying about that name and it has fallen over to today.
Maybe I’ll write that email now.
Did you notice I did no “real” writing today?
Other than writing the entire 12- part newsletter serial (8500 words) and editing it, I’ve not done any “real” writing in January.
Except, of course, for writing blog posts–two a week, every week.
That’s by design.
I’m spending January getting organized for the launch so I don’t have to worry about it the rest of the year.
I’m working on a blog calendar, reviewing marketing ideas I’ve already thought about, and thinking about whatever my publisher has in mind.
My hope is I can return to a new project by the end of the month.
Doing preliminary research for that idea is also on my list.
And if all else fails, I’ve always got marketing and old projects to revise.
Is this how you envision author a writer’s life?
What does a marketing author’s day look like? Click to Tweet
How much marketing does an author have to do? Click to Tweet
Thanks for sharing you marketing calendar, Michelle. It’s given me some good ideas!
Everyone is different, Carol, but I thought it important for people to see how complicated and time consuming being a writer can be.
Michelle, I admire your generosity. Most people would keep their wisdom to themselves. Thanks for sharing.
Shirlee, Michelle’s generosity and Christian Heart is the stuff of legend. To say she is a class act is a wild understatement.
Sure beats selling copies of your book out of the trunk of your car at swap meets…though that did work for Richard paul Evans, with “The Christmas Box”.
* And have I ever told you, Michelle, how much I admire your professionalism?
Mary Kay Moody
Whew. Thanks, Michelle, for sharing this. When I have a day with “no real writing” I often wonder what I’m doing wrong. So glad to know that some days are just like that, and I’m not alone. Also appreciate you shining the light on the details. Helps me in planning. (I’m bookmarking this!)
Wishing you the best on your book.
Happy to help, Mary Kay.
I wanted people to know how crazy it can get. The days are long gone when you turn in a manuscript and have nothing else to do until it’s time to sign autographs!
Thanks, Michelle. I’m looking forward to reading the finished project! Have I missed a post where you talked about the email list for your newsletter? I’m interested in knowing how you generated that.
Hi Kathy! I didn’t write a post on generating the email newsletter list. I periodically post the link on my blog at http://www.michelleule,com.
Thanks for asking.
Wow! Does this ever sound like a writer’s life is complicated and filled with time-consuming things.
That’s why I wrote this post, Anne. Being an author is so much more that writing the best book possible.
No one, of course, loves your story or has as much invested as you do, so there’s the imputus. It does get crazy sometimes.
Thank you, Michele! Marketing and keeping all the balls in the air is a lot of work! I was saying “whew!” just from reading it. 🙂 But even with serious concentration, I could only see myself doing half of this in one day. You area mover!
Some days you just role, Linda, and blog ideas flash like crazy.
Sigh. Then there are the other days . . . .
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