• GloriaFeldt
  • Countdown to Publication 33 days out: In Which She Needs to Take Her Own Advice
Countdown to Publication 33 days out: In Which She Needs to Take Her Own Advice
Written by
September 2010
Written by
September 2010
Dear SheWriters. As I start my Countdown, I’m incredibly grateful to each previous contributor for sharing your experiences generously, honestly, and sometimes humorously. I’ve been lounging around your pool of wisdom, absorbing tips from every column—Hope Edelman’s computer meltdown a year ago through Lori Tharps’ thrill at seeing her first novel on the shelves last week. Now I’m on the high board, about to plunge. Deep breath. No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power took eighteen months of writing but a lifetime of learning on the frontlines. It’s about American women’s ambivalent relationship with power, why after almost two centuries of the women’s movement, 51 percent of the population holds only 18 percent of influential leadership positions in work and politics, with similar dynamics in personal relationships. There are many reasons why we’re still so far from parity, but there are no excuses any more. So, practical activist that I am, I set out to find inspiring women’s stories and to create the 9 Ways—specific “power tools”--women can use to lead unlimited lives. It’s my fourth book. But still…I feel unexpectedly jittery realizing it will be on bookshelves by October 5. The minute I finished final edits last May, I swung into marketing mode. Wrote an eight-page memo listing offers of book events, social media goals, media contacts. I planned to have my website—the centerpiece of it all--revamped by July 31 and my first newsletter out mid-August. I had long-lead story pitches in mind and was sure that by now they’d be sold and written. My terrific intern, Dior Vargas, was busily updating my blog list so I could offer online book events and giveaways. I was ORGANIZED. The talented folks at Seal, my publisher, made up this cool card—I never leave home without a bunch in my purse and relish giving them to everyone I meet:

I was sure that by September, I’d be relaxing, planning brilliant presentations, doing extra workouts, getting a massage or two, and finding that perfect red suit. (it’s either superstition or just superficial, but I have a fetish about wearing colors pegged to my book covers.) I’d be fit, rested, and rarin’ for the book tour. But noooo. The website remains under construction and if I’m lucky will be only six weeks late launching. No newsletters have been sent because they’re supposed to look like the website and entice people to click onto said (finished) website. Heck, I haven’t been able to sync my newsletter contacts to my computer since I got my new Blackberry anyhow. Everything else, while coming along, is also, ahem, under construction. What to do? After fretting a while, I’m now staring at my list of the 9 Ways I’m suggesting other women use, looking for some inspiration for my own dilemma. But help me out here, SheWriters. What would you do to make up for a significant delay in the linchpin of your publicity campaign?

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  • GloriaFeldt

    The short attention span Courtney mentions is so true. I realized that this morning when I saw my Facebook wall splashed with three of my upcoming events. I had asked Dior, my intern, to post them. Each of the postings had attracted heartening comments and "likes." But then I realized that the memory of these events will probably be as fleeting as that flow of updates that moves across our Facebook pages. Decided to slow down and wait a couple weeks before posting any more.

    Courtney, I wish you huge success with your new book "Do It Anyway." I believe you have not just a book but a movement. Feel free to share more about it here. (Create a movement--that's power tool #7 so it's quite relevant :-)

  • GloriaFeldt

    "...move slowly into your magnificence." Thank you, Flora. I think we should all put that onto a poster we put on our computers.

  • Flora Morris Brown


    Change the way you're looking at it. It's only a delay if you perceive it as one.

    All good things happen at the right time. It's your enthusiasm and anticipation that you are feeling. Embrace it, be grateful for and move slowly into your magnificence.


  • Rebecca Rasmussen

    Friends -- Many I have met online just responding to their blog posts and in turn they contacted met, etc, :)

  • Courtney E. Martin

    People have such a short attention span these days that I'm not sure it's a bad thing to really eat, breath, and sleep publicity the week or two before the book (um, yes, I'm doing that now). I've noticed that people think they can sit on anything that's not urgent, but if the book is coming out NEXT week, they actually respond. Just food for thought.

  • GloriaFeldt

    Thank you Deborah and Rebecca. Especially for the deep breath advice!!
    I tweeted this post and can report that I am getting lots of twitter sympathy for the website delay. So obviously I am not alone with that problem.

    Along the lines of Deborah's suggestion of power tool #3, what's the best resource any of you might have discovered you had when you were in a publication countdown crunch?

  • Rebecca Rasmussen

    I am so excited to follow your countdown. Your book sounds fabulous!

  • Deborah Siegel Writing

    Gloria, we are honored to have you counting down with us here! You inspire the heck outa me, delayed or not, and I know that our community is in for a treat by following your posts during these coming weeks. I would say number 3 (use what you've got) and number 5 (carpe chaos) are particularly appropriate here in light of your delay. That, and I'd add a 10th tool -- the one you began this post with: deep breath. Breeeaatthhhee!