Today I'm celebrating the official publication of my new novel, Cold Hands, Warm Heart. So many people have been wonderful and generous with help. I've received great editing, marketing advice, graphic design tips, cheerleading and hand-holding. I appreciate all of it!
Now, I'm sure that many of you are sitting there thinking, "Gee Jill, what more can I do? Surely there's something." Feel free to quickly move on if that thought never crossed your mind! But everyone tells me that authors have to do more self-promotion, so here goes:
Here are some ideas on what would be helpful at this point.
1. If the economy hasn't completely done you in, buy the book soon.
Buy 1 for yourself. Buy multiple copies and save them as gifts for birthdays and holidays. If you don't have a tween or teen in your life, donate a copy to your public library, nearby school or local hospital library. Strong, early sales are very important in the publishing world; it's how they measure success.
If you live near me, I would be delighted to sign your copy. Or, send me an email and I'll quickly mail you a personalized signed bookplate that you can paste right into the book. You can buy books through any online seller. I also encourage you to buy via your local (and probably struggling) independent bookstore. If they don't have the book in stock, it's easy to place a special order.
2. Spread the word.
Tell any teachers, librarians (public and school), health professionals, social workers, tweens and teens you know about the book. If you are a teacher, consider using it as a read-aloud or order it for the school library. Use it as a text for classroom discussion.
Go on Amazon, Goodreads and other book sites and give it a rating or write a short review. If you are on Facebook or other social networking sites, mention the book in your status update or What I'm Reading Now notes. Become my friend on Facebook and send me congratulations!
If you know anyone who has had an organ transplant or anyone who has been a donor family, make sure they know about the book. Recommend it or buy them a gift.
If you know anyone in the media, tell them that April is National Donate Life month and you know about a great book that looks at a family's decision to donate the organs of their loved one. The author would make a strong and timely interview subject. Pass along their contact info to me and I'll get them a press kit.
3. See me in person.
Come to one of my scheduled events. First event -- This Friday, April 3, 7 pm at Books Inc. in Palo Alto, CA. Check out my blog and Facebook page for updates on where I'll be reading.) Invite friends to come with you. I'm always nervous about speaking in public and your encouraging smile is so helpful. Say hi.
If you are a middle-school, high school or college teacher or librarian, invite me to speak to your students. Recommend me as a speaker to your local bookstore events coordinator, book group, wrirting group or community organization. My book is being marketed as young adult, but grown-ups also find it to be provocative. I can talk to your group about the book itself, about organ donation and can also offer practical advice about writing and publishing.
4. Hugs and well-wishes. These are always appreciated most of all. Send them my way.