What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done to sell your books?
I hadn’t ridden a Greyhound bus since I was 14, traveling across Texas with my friend Elsie to visit my grandmother. But there i was last Sunday, rolling along from Burlington VT to Boston because it was impossible to get to my meeting in Boston any other way today.
I'd squeezed in an appearance at the Burlington Book Festival. I didn’t quite “move a mountain of books” as Ric, the Fair’s ebullient organizer, had promised, but I spoke to a roomful of enthusiastic participants, signed a goodly number of books, and many of the women said they planned to visit my website to find out more about the 9 Ways. Plus the spirited conversation at Saturday's authors dinner was great preparation for objections I’m sure to encounter when I talk publicly about women’s relationship with power and why I think women must change how we think about power in order to reach parity in any of our lifetimes. (Check out my book trailer
to see stats that will set your hair on fire.)
I was fresh from my first book event back in Arizona, an elegant Northern Trust Bank book tea. It was the perfect cultivation event for their high net worth clients and ideal for me as the author because they buy books for attendees. I want more venues like that and am seeking contacts to pitch at other banks. Selling books in multiples is much more fruitful than one at a time.
So now you know why I got up in the wee hours Friday to fly back to New York, repack and get up in the wee hours Saturday to fly to Vermont for the book fair, only to repack Sunday and head to Boston for a Jewish Women’s Archive board meeting where I promoted the October 12 event they’re sponsoring in Cambridge. (If anyone in the Boston area is interested in attending, please let me know.) Monday, I flew to Kansas City to meet up with the rest of the WomenGirlsLadies
intergenerational feminist panel, SheWriter pals Courtney Martin
, Deborah Siegel
, and Kristal Brent Zook
, for a presentation on Tuesday.
My book doesn’t officially launch until Oct. 5, but it’s been available for preorder online for a month and has already made Amazon’s top 100
leadership and women’s history lists a couple of times.
SheWriters, I want to know whether you think it’s a strategic mistake to start doing events before your launch date. What has been your experience? Is it better to stay mum about the book before the launch date? Or is it useful to encourage pre-orders
to show the strength of your book? How have you managed to build prelaunch buzz without compromising sales during the first few weeks after your launch?
And what is the weirdest thing you’ve ever done to sell your books. Let me know here in the comments section.
Meanwhile, the leaves had already started to turn up in New England. I leaned back to enjoy the fall colors as the bus rolled along.
Please join me at upcoming events near you, starting next week is New York:
Tuesday, Oct. 5, Barnes and Noble Lincoln Triangle
, 7:30 pm.
Thursday, Oct. 7, The Strand, 7pm
Surprise guests and lots of fun at both.
Here’s the full events list
All blogs, tweets, and Facebook mentions of them will be very appreciated.
Pre-order No Excuses here.