Archive for May, 2010

Lots of book news

Posted in Books, Writing on May 24, 2010 by oneoveralpha

As I’ve previously blogged, I ordered 50 copies of my book A Man of Few Words.  Overjoyed, I flipped through them when they arrived and thought they looked wonderful.  Then, about a week ago I received an email saying that the books “did not print on white paper as expected,” and CreateSpace was “working as quickly as possible to print a replacement order.” I went, Really? I flipped open a book and thought, I guess that isn’t white, but I hadn’t noticed.  However, whenever I made changes to my book or made an order, an email went to my CreateSpace account as well as my regular email.  But this email only came to my regular address, which made me question its legitimacy.  So I pretty much forgot about, but when I came home today there was a box waiting for.  With 50 more of my books.  Printed on white paper.

Now I can definitely see the difference.  Of course this means the original 50 books are now collector’s items.  😛

In other book news, I sold one on Amazon!  Counting the one I sold to a friend last week, I’ve sold a total of two!  And now I have 50 more to sell.

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Small Scale Book Marketing

Posted in Books, Writing on May 23, 2010 by Stephen L. Thompson

I recently self-published a collection of flash fiction stories, A Man of Few Words. It was a long, tiring process to get it published, but now I have the long, tiring process of marketing it to look forward to. Normally, you’d think an author would go on a book tour and have book signings across the country. That’s several orders of magnitude bigger than what I’m capable of doing now, so I’m focusing on smaller marketing ploys. The first few on the list don’t market my book, they just direct people to my website where they’ll see that I have a book for sale.

Business Cards

I figured that since I had a book out, I should get some business cards. I’ve known for awhile that when I finally got around to getting cards they would read “Professional Dreamer and Destroyer of Worlds.” (Here’s an explanation as to why.) So I had the words, I just needed the cards. Working on a budget, I bought a pack of print-your-own cards; you print out a sheet and then snap out your cards.

Unfortunately, my printer at home kinda sucks, so I ended up with a dozen or so cards that were slightly misaligned or had smudges. I ended up using a printer at work to get some pristine cards, but what should I do with the not-so pristine ones? Well, over the years I’ve seen various eateries put out a box with a sign saying something like, “Drop in your business card for a chance to win a free lunch.” A free lunch is always good, but you’d think that whoever empties out the box might flip through them, and a “Destroyer of Worlds” would probably stand out.

Bumper Stickers

A couple years ago I bought some bumper stickers with my website. Over the years the one on my car has faded, but it was still readable. I waited until my book was out to replace it with a bright, shiny, new one.

Marking Bills

For a couple of years now, I’ve been adding bills to Where’s George, a website that lets you track your bills by their serial numbers. Whenever I get change, I log in and add my new bills. Before now, I would then separate the bills into three piles. One pile I would mark with “wheresgeorge.com,” the second I would mark with my website, and the last I would mark with thought provoking quotes, like one of my stories, “Money Talks.” But since my book came out, I’ve been marking every bill with my website.

Stunts

There were two main reasons I wanted to get my book out in May. The main reason was just to be done with it, but the other reason was that in June I was doing my 30 Stories in 30 Days challenge. This is where I drive myself nuts by writing 30 stories in as many days. How this helps market my book is that during my challenge there is increased traffic to my website. And now, after the stories – most of which are flash fiction due to time constraints – I’ll have a little blurb saying, “If you enjoyed these stories, check out my self-published collection of flash fiction stories, A Man of Few Words.”

Twitter

I posted notices about my book on the various social media I’m on, but the main one I used was Twitter. Now, the good thing about Twitter is it lets you send out a message that could potentially be seen by thousands of people. The downside is that it will only been seen by those thousands if they are looking when you send it out, otherwise it will be buried by the millions of other tweets sent out each day. One way around that is to send out multiple tweets, although that can get annoying. So, to try to have fun with something that can be annoying, I started numbering my annoying tweets stating my book is for sale.

Chatroulette

Chatroulette is a site where you are matched with a random person to chat through your webcam. If the person you’re talking to is boring or doing something you don’t like, you just hit the “Next” button and you’re matched with another random person. The upside of Chatroulette is you can talk to total strangers from around the world about your book. The downside is that if you’re on for about two minutes, you’ll see some guy masturbating. You get quick on hitting the next button, but you can also have fun with it.

Bookcrossing

Bookcrossing.com is a site that lets people share the books they enjoy with the rest of the world. How? You log in a book, they give you an ID number, you write the ID number in the book along with a note or something about Bookcrossing.com, and then you leave it somewhere people will find it. Hopefully, whoever picks it up will log it in to see where the books has been before, and the process will continue. In a few weeks I will be leaving a book at a convention in Philadelphia, this fall I’ll be sending out a book to a friend to leave someplace in Albuquerque, and I have a friend with family in Hawaii, so the next time they visit I’ll be sending a book with them. Hopefully, the people that find the book will enjoy it so much they buy their own copy.

Donations

Hoping people buy their own copy of a book they enjoy is the same reason I’m planning on donating books to several libraries, from my high school and college, to the various public libraries I’ve patronized over the years.

Blogs

I’ve written blogs for when I received my first proof copy, my second proof copy, for when my book went on sale, when I received the copies I had ordered, and for my basic plan on marketing them.

If I come up with anything else, I’ll be sure to let you know.

Books, Books, and More Books

Posted in Books, Writing on May 15, 2010 by oneoveralpha

On Thursday May 6, I finalized my book A Man of Few Words. The first thing I did was order a book for my mom, and then ordered 50 for myself. My mom received her book on Monday, which was a bit of a surprise for her. When I checked on my order of 50 it was listed as still “Queued for Production.” I figured that they are probably used to printing one or two at a time, and not 50 so it would take them a day or two to get all of them printed. But even last Thursday evening, when I checked, it was still listed at “Queued for Production.” I began to feel that was a tad worrisome. Why is it taking so long? So I was pleasantly surprised last night when I came home from work to find a slip in my mailbox from the Post Office saying I had three packages to pick up. Apparently, for whatever reason, the “Queued for Production” was never changed to “Shipped.” This morning I went to the Post Office, and I now have my 50 books.

Let the mayhem begin.

Buy My Book!

Posted in Books, humor, Stories, Writing on May 10, 2010 by oneoveralpha

This is a clip from The Critic episode “Miserable.” There’s a joke right after this that I enjoy (no offense to the booksellers I know) but I couldn’t find a clip with that. So here’s a link to the whole scene, which I couldn’t figure out how to embed with WordPress. There’s also a good joke later on in the episode involving the display.

Anyway

After several years of off-and-on work, my collection of flash fiction stories A Man of Few Words is now for sale. Woohoo! You can buy it from my CreateSpace estore (which gives me a higher royalty, FYI :D) or from Amazon.com. I’ve also put in an order for some books which I will be selling myself, but they won’t arrive for another week or so.

I had almost hoped that after all the work writing the stories, polishing up the stories, getting the manuscript all worked out and everything, that I’d be able to relax and start work on my next collection. Then I realized, I have to sell the damn thing now. There’s always something.

My First Book, Take 2!

Posted in Books, Writing on May 6, 2010 by oneoveralpha

As I mentioned in my last post, there were a few little problems with the proof of A Man of Few Words. Those have now been taken care of. (What’s the saying, Art is never finished, only abandoned.) It takes a few days for everything to show up on Amazon, so I’m waiting until Monday to make the big announcement.

The main reason I wanted to post this blog was to write about how calm I am. I mean, I just published my first book, and I’m just sitting here waiting for my hot dogs to be done. Part of why I’m so calm is it’s my nature. Also, I probably came up with the idea of a collection of my flash fiction titled A Man of Few Words three or four years ago. I’m tired. But now it’s done and I can rest … oh, wait, NOW I have to sell the damn thing! Will this ever end? 😀

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