on being your own publicist

photo of My Great Canadian Adventures and Winter Moose Visits Montreal at Chapters

Chapters Newmarket (17440 Yonge Street, Newmarket, Ontario ) and other Chapters locations support local authors (like myself) by allowing in-store meet-the-author events. I had my books up temporarily but because I am self-published cannot sell in Chapters.

on marketing your books

It has not been an easy process marketing myself and spreading the word about my books and my passion for writing and illustrating.  This is even more challenging being self-published. Honestly though, I am challenged for time.  Unless you are super lucky, people will not know who you are until you get your name around.  It takes time to do some PR work, legwork and marketing development.  It takes time to prepare the designs for bookmarks, business cards, social media posts, etc.

Keep in mind that you can always hire someone to help you out with marketing, promotion of your book(s) and website/promo design.

on helpful tips:

  1. Website.  It is my opinion that this is the MOST important marketing tool.  Create a website, so that you can direct traffic to it (such as including the website address on a bookmark or just telling people about your site).  I don’t know about you, but the first thing I do when see a new website is type it into my Internet browser to check it out.
  2. Write a blog. Have some fun with it, while increasing your exposure.
  3. Don’t be shy.  Talk to everyone you know about your books and passions. You never know who you might meet along the way.  I think some people may think I am nuts just going on and on about my passion for writing and illustrating, but who cares? Maybe they are actually listening!
  4. Use social media to your benefit. Just get your name and product out there. Ask your friends to “share” your posts.
  5. Have a book launch.  A good reason to have a party. I always dreamed of having a book signing event.  It is a great way to get the ball rolling and make some sales.  Make it a goal to sell as many books as you can. My book launch was in July 2018. One of my friends just commented over the weekend that my book launch was great and that it was nice to meet up with other friends that we don’t see as often. 
  6. Schedule book readings.  I have completed my third book reading with SK/JK/G1/G2 classes.  It is great just to get out in the community and expose yourself. It is an opportunity to hand out bookmarks, etc. 
  7. Use all the resources that you have.  Unless you are super lucky, famous or have prior contacts, no one knows who you are – an author with a published book. 
  8. Make a business card with your contact information. And pass it around.  This is something I am working on. I find that having a business card or flyer is much easier than writing down your website information on a piece of paper every time you see someone. You can also make a bookmark.
  9. Learn how to design your own advertising. If you don’t already know how,  learning how to design graphics and social media posts will come in very handy.  I took a weekly evening course over a 16-week period on graphic design at Seneca College.  The course covered Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and DreamWeaver.  Now, I have full control over my creative process and can work at my own pace.  Not to mention- not needing to hire a graphic designer for every post is a huge money saver!
  10. Have an open mind.  You must be open to trying new things. Be creative. Every opportunity is a chance to promote your book(s).

Good luck and most importantly – have fun! 

In this thing called life, one needs to stay focused and happy…