I'm in the final stages of my pre-publication publicity push, and I've learned so much as I've gone through it, so I thought that in addition to answering questions on the blog, I'd also chat about what I'm doing publicity-wise, if you guys are interested in such things.
One of the critical things I've discovered is how invaluable booksellers are...the actual folks who toil at your local store or behind the counter at your nearby Barnes and Noble. Your marketing team can do a hell of a lot for you, but at the end of the day, the folks in the stores are the ones who have influence over buyers and can keep your book in front of readers for a longer period of time than you publisher might have anticipated in their co-op space purchases.
To that end, this week, I'm starting to head out to local stores to introduce myself, talk about the book, and hand out my few remaining galleys. We get the actual book in a few weeks, so once I've burned through the last of my galleys, I'll hand out books. It's an interesting process, and something that, until I was published, I'd never even though about. But check out this article from yesterday's NY Times: pounding the pavement really can help.
Obviously, I can only get to so many local stores, so if you're a bookseller or if you're pals with a bookseller who might be interested in reading a galley, shoot me a note. I only have a few left, but I'll drop one in the mail.
Writers: have you found that this one-on-one, personalized marketing has really helped? I'm curious to hear about how other people have done this in the past. And booksellers: do you truly take note when an author shows up and awkwardly mumbles an introduction? I'm a really outgoing person, but I feel a little self-conscious doing this!