Behind the Glass | Publishing | Marketing

marketing

I have given up on marketing. Not all aspects of marketing, but the marketing that involves other people – Book blogs, promotion groups etc. When it comes down to it, I have limited time to spend on my writing, and the time I do have I would rather write than invest my time in marketing.

That’s not to say I don’t do anything. I just do my own thing, without spending too much time on it, and whatever happens, happens. In the future I will look into book promotion sites, but for now I am happy to type away on my blog and varying social media sites.

So what do I do?

I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and Pinterest. I try to have different content on each social media outlet. I post quotes that I love on Tumblr. I post photos on Instagram. I’m a little overwhelmed by Twitter so I use it as a feed for my other sites, and since I’m most comfortable with Facebook it is where you will most likely find the odd boosted post. Since GBG is currently free, I have boosted a few posts to get the word out with promotional images like this.

If you search book marketing and promotion, google will come back with 24,300,000 results. I’ve looked at most of these, (not really, but it feels like it) and they all say different things. Then again, a lot say the same thing. So I’ve decided to do my own thing. It’s probably not the right thing to do, but I only do what I feel comfortable with. And maybe one day, when I have more books out there, I will attack the promotional ideas again.

This is the final is this series of blog posts. If you missed any of the previous entries, just click on the post links below.

Behind the Glass | Dreaming | The Seed

Behind the Glass | Dreaming | World Building

Behind the Glass | Dreaming | Characters

Behind the Glass | Dreaming | Inspiration

Behind the Glass | Writing | Organisation

Behind the Glass | Writing | Pen to Paper

Behind the Glass | Writing | Editing

Behind the Glass | Publishing | Formatting

Behind the Glass | Publishing | Cover Design & Blurb

*If you haven’t read Girl Behind Glass yet, it is currently free in the Kindle store – http://goo.gl/KUGZrA

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Behind the Glass | Publishing | Cover Design & Blurb

cover design

Even though the cover was part of the formatting process, I feel it needs its own blog. Book covers sell books. They are not the only thing that sell books, they are not even the most important thing that sell books, but a good cover is worth investing in.

I have a few graphic design skills and attempted a few cover layouts myself (see here for previous blog post) but I knew I did not have the skills I needed to get the cover I wanted.

I decided to use an online sourcing site called 99 Designs. Mainly because I could determine the price, I would be given the choice of a number of designs, and I did not know them. I found this an important part, as sometimes I find it difficult to tell someone I know that I’m not happy with what they’ve done. As I discovered, I also felt uncomfortable telling strangers that too.

I uploaded a brief that went something like this:
————————————————————————–
Possible Themes:
Inside vs Outside.
Freedom vs Security
Reflection/Glass – things not as they appear.
City vs Nature

Possible Images:
Shattered Glass
Domed City – Black panels, white framework from outside. Inside: Stark. Futuristic. Colours: White, Grey, Black with splashes of red.
Nature – Lush Forest and/or desolate earth.
Main Character: Female. 16. Auburn hair. Barcode tattoo on wrist. Also wears futuristic communication device on wrist.

I tend to gravitate towards covers that have a single point of focus rather than detailed backgrounds, but I am willing to consider anything.
————————————————————————–

The response was slow at first, and I began to doubt the choice I had made. Admittedly, I hadn’t given the designers a lot to work with, but after browsing some of the covers already done, I was confident enough to hang in there. And the results were amazing. I wish I could show you what some of the designs that I didn’t end up choosing looked like, but most of the designers withdrew their concepts once the contest ended. The few that are left you can see here.
Choosing one design was difficult. I wanted to choose at least five. But a book with five different covers is probably not the best idea.

Having a few computer graphic skills and also the software needed, I made sure that the designer supplied all layers of the design so I could alter it for various promotional material. It is important to let the designer know at the start of the process that you require the layered files of your book cover.

Writing the blurb was harder than writing the entire novel. I read countless articles and advice, but none of it seemed to help. If I’m honest, I’m still not happy with my book blurbs, but they are what they are. My advice to anyone out there would be to get another author you trust to read your book and write the blurb for you. Condensing your story into a few short lines without giving away too much information, and at the same time saying enough to spike the reader’s interest, is a skill I’m not sure I have.

The next post will be published on 15th October and is the final in this series.

Behind the Glass | Publishing | Marketing

*If you haven’t read Girl Behind Glass yet, it is currently free in the Kindle store – http://goo.gl/KUGZrA

Behind the Glass | Publishing | Formatting

formatting

This is a very short post as most of what I learned about formatting was trial and error.

Formatting for Kindle is wonderfully simple.

Formatting for Createspace is relatively easy. (Okay, I did struggle with cover alignment a little.)

Formatting for Smashwords is hell.

I like to have information provided in easy to read concise sections. Not a 100+ page document. My saving grace were the templates. I don’t think I would have done it correctly without the them. I thought I was rather well versed in using Microsoft Word. Turns out, I’m not. But there is one thing I will say, there is almost nothing better than holding a paperback version of your book in your hands.

 

The next post will be published on 8th October.

Behind the Glass | Publishing | Cover Design & Blurb

*If you haven’t read Girl Behind Glass yet, it is currently free in the Kindle store – http://goo.gl/KUGZrA