Although this book publicist hasn’t yet read David Brock’s new book, Killing the Messenger: The Right-Wing Plot to Derail Hillary Clinton and hijack Your Government, she does know an amazingly fortunate book promotion opportunity when she sees it. Wow! Brock’s book was featured today on CNN.com in an article called David Brock’s new book takes on GOP, New York Times.
Even someone who’s jaw isn’t on the floor when she sees book reviews unexpectedly achieve the prominence in important venues such as CNN.com, and who doesn’t think of “book promotion opportunities” before all else when she’s reading the news <winking while her tongue is firmly planted in her cheek>, would be impressed with David Brock’s good luck.
Book publicists who snare book reviews for authors always want to give novelists and experts what they want: positive, affirmative book reviews. We want authors to feel good about their books, and all book publicists have worked with authors whose egos have been shattered by criticism of their writing. It’s particularly hard for book publicists to read negative book reviews since, as book publicists, we take on only projects in which we strongly believe. That means a negative book review doesn’t only reflect poorly on the author. It also is a statement about a book publicist’s judgment, and a book publicist’s reputation is only as good as the last book he or she promoted…so negative book reviews affect a book publicist’s bottom line, too.
Don’t frustrate this book publicist or yourself! If you’re seeking traditional book reviews for your novel, then approach book publicists between four and six months before your book’s publication date.
A new novelist just approached this frustrated book publicist to let her know about her upcoming novel. It will be published at the end of July, the author told me with great excitement. And could I work with her to get magazines and newspapers to review her book?
They say there’s no such thing as bad publicity, and I’d interpret that to mean there’s no such thing as bad book publicity, either.
Sometimes, I would agree with that. Usually, I would say that even a lukewarm book review is better than no book review at all, or a combative interviewer is far kinder than the interviewer who chooses to ignore you completely.
But, after seeing the book publicity opportunities recently garnered by Gary L. Stewart, author of the new book, The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for My Father…and Finding the Zodiac Killer, this book publicist has to wonder about that.
Why don’t we hear more about eBook promotion? According to Futurebook, a digital blog from The Bookseller, the media still are reluctant to take eBooks seriously. And this book publicist, too, has noticed that few authors make the round of broadcast media shows as part of their book publicity campaigns. Traditional book review outlets, too, seem to be taking a wait-and-see attitude about eBooks. It’s as if traditional book reviewers are taking a wait-and-see attitude. If eBooks really catch, on then traditional book reviewers might start to take them seriously.
Since the book publishing world is changing all the time, I rarely comment on the technological revolution that’s taking place all around us. It’s enough to say that indie books (or self-published books, or whatever you’d prefer to call books that are not traditionally published and distributed) have lost their stigma, and all of the book publicity opportunities that are available to authors of traditionally published books are now on the table for indie authors, too.
Your next book publicity opportunity might be waiting for you in the headlines. Here’s what I mean by that. No author or publisher or book publicist — no human being on the planet, for that matter — wants to read or hear bad news. No one is wishing bad news on the world at large, and no one is hoping for catastrophes or disasters to hit our loved ones or ourselves, either. But, sometimes, bad things happen that, as an author, ties into your book.
Facebook, specifically, and social networking, in general, have become integral components of book promotion campaigns. Publishers tell all their authors to build up their base of friends, fans, and followers, and to regularly provide content to them via a variety of social networking venues. Authors, instinctively, know that it’s a good idea to set up (or build up) their social networking presence when it’s time to start a new book promotion campaign. Sure, it’s great to get mainstream media interviews and other traditional book publicity opportunities. But how cool is it to have your old grade school companions buzzing about your new book? You just can’t beat it.