There are some moments in life when you think to yourself, “I am finished.” I recall thinking that when I wrote ‘the end’ at the end of “I am not Joe Donovan.” Great – all done, let the next one take half as long please. Well… who knew eh? Once I’d done my bit, I had the editor do hers which meant I still hadn’t finished. When that was done I had to work out how to put the words onto Amazon’s digital offerings and find an illustrator to help me design my cover. At the same time I was creating a website so that the hordes of anxious readers could find me and tell me what a great book I’d written.
These were just the things that went well. I entered the NZ Book awards and they couldn’t download the book. A photo was also required and being fairly certain they weren’t going to have to use it, I sent them my passport photo but it showed me that there were things besides the book that I needed to address. That is one of the reasons I’ve now got a much better one that you can see grinning at you from the top of the page. Ask me why I wasn’t holding my own book in it – yep, it was in the car. First rule of marketing, always have your product on hand.
I also failed miserably at uploading my cover to Kindle Publishing which is the best thing that could’ve happened because I went out and found a great NZ printing company Book Print and created Tuatara Publishing – basically me in my office with a cool logo.
I realize there is always going to be more I have to learn how to do. Now it’s how to market and sell. When I flew to England I dropped off a few copies in airports along the way and another couple on the tube in London. Perhaps it was dumb but maybe “I am not Joe Donovan” has given someone a few hours of enjoyment and they’re passing it on. Who knows?
I stopped being afraid of being pushy when I worked out that independent bookstores actually WANT to stock my book which helped me take the big leap and add it to a national data base. Now I’ve had sales from that and when I come home from work (the one that pays the bills) I reply to emails and work out if I’ll have time to post orders in my lunch break tomorrow.
And the money is pouring in. I’ve made a whole $12.00 today. I can’t see the yacht sailing into my future just yet but it’s not been at all bad learning how to market and sell. If I could only work out how to write AND sell …