First of all, let me tell you that I am a published author of fiction and nonfiction.

I’ve definitely been at the bottom, looking towards the fantastically high peak of getting a book published by an actual publisher, let alone getting someone to buy a copy of my book. So, I’m going to pass on some hard-earned tips that will help you get published and make the book a bestseller.

What is Marketing?

Marketing is when you put beer and diapers side by side on Friday nights, in time for the men who come to your store after work for beer and diapers. And it puts a few items on special, grouped by beer and diapers, so you don’t miss out: the best of its best-selling snacks for men, kids, and wives, too.

So how do you market a book?

1) Your best book is really good.

What does this mean?

That you are a good writer, and you write well, and what you write is convincing.

2) If it is fiction, the story has to reach inside the reader and touch true feelings. My best advice is to write from your own guts. Take us inside the experience. How does it feel, how does it taste, how does it play, how does it sound, where is it? All these questions have to be answered in your writing.

3) If it’s nonfiction, tell me the story. Use the 5Ws: who, what, where, when, why.

4) Have a beginning, and put it in the context of the whole.

5) Have a middle part where you get going and get into the meat. Describe what the meat tastes like to me and also what it smells like. Was it hot meat? Yeah? Well, tell me about the heat of the meat.

6) Write about what YOU are also interested in. Tell me about your experiences doing, seeing and being with what turns you on. If you didn’t like having something to do with it, bring me into the negative, develop it.

Example: “I didn’t like the movie. It sucked a lot.”

No, not enough. Give me more!

Example: “The movie is very stupid and hits new lows of self-indulgent self-references.”

No, there is not yet.

Tell me WHY it’s stupid and how it gets to the new lows.

Example: “This movie has dialogue that amounts to grunts and groans, with not a word that makes sense. I watched all the characters scratch themselves for 3 hours. Yeah, that was the theme of the whole movie. If you like people watching scratching, grunting and moaning, this is going to be your epic movie experience. The rest of you, do yourself a favor and give this so-called artistic indulgence a wide berth.”

6) Write a great summary, your conclusion, with a cliffhanger to lure us back for the next one in the series, or a place where you can be satisfied that all the villains are existentially and ironically punished, and the heroes are restored or raised to their own rewards.

7) Even if the end is black and everyone dies, give it to me in style.

8) If your style is concise and clipped and to the point, make the words like daggers through my cold, cold heart.

9) What is the title of your book? “Cancer Face”, or “The Love Genius”, or “Kraft Dinner Zombie”. Whatever it is, it’s a bit like naming your rock band. Or a new political party.

Good, so you have a great book. Now you have to find the editor. And for starters, this could end up being you. Yes, the final publisher of your work could be You Incorporated.

There are many self-publishing options to explore. Do an internet search and take your time to research. I am hesitant to mention specific options, lest my article get rejected.

I have some specific suggestions for you to sell your own self-published book:

1) Get a few copies and go door to door. I have done this and you will be very surprised how many books you will sell using this method.

2) Get ready for NO. The word NO is a huge barrier for most of us, especially when tied to something as precious as our own work. Learn to take NO for what it really is.

3) The NO is a keyword for “not now, thank you very much”. It’s also very good news, because it means you’re that much closer to your next “YES, thanks, sure, I’ll buy you a book.”

4) Establish a regular routine of going out and selling your book door to door, and choose times when people are most likely to be home, respecting the best hours to NOT ring the doorbell or knock on that door. Use good common sense. After 9 PM is NOT a good idea.

5) Create a nice tasty drop-back caller, with directions to your website or sales page with your publisher partner.

6) Which brings us to selecting a good website provider, the domain name for your dot com, and the website host. All of this requires that you take your time and build each part with care and consideration.

7) Create press releases above the crowd, and start reaching out to all the movers and shakers in the media world, and let them know about your book.

8) Prepare some great videos about your book and post them on all the internet sites where you can post videos.

9) Start linking to everything you’re doing in a way that makes it a real, legitimate backlink.

10) Create a fan page. Obviously, I’m going to suggest Facebook and all the other social networks that you can wave your mouse over.

Phew! I have a lot more to write on this topic, so I know I’ll be back and do a few more articles on promoting your book. It’s daunting, for sure. Hey, just writing a book to the end, and then rewriting it until it’s polished prose, that’s quite an accomplishment. It’s almost unfair that a great artist like you has to sweat through even more work. You want your marketing to be successful, so take the time. You can count on it taking as long as it took you to write his book, maybe longer.

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