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SPAWNews is packed with writing, editing, illustrating, and publishing information. Each month you receive market opportunities, events, and articles you can use now!
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How to Use the SPAWN Market Update to Promote Your Book

By Patricia L. Fry

Do you want to sell more books? Do you need some new promotional ideas and resources? If you aren’t reading the SPAWN Market Update, you could be missing out on a phenomenal opportunity to increase your book’s visibility, exposure and sales.

A fresh, new issue of the SPAWN Market Update is posted each first of the month in the member area of the SPAWN Web site. If you’re a member with any interest or investment in publishing, this is a must read. If you aren’t yet a member, $65 will buy you a year-long membership, a free book of your choice worth anywhere from $12.95 to $19.95 AND you’ll have access to the valuable, one-of-a-kind SPAWN Market Update.

The opportunities, resources and information in just one issue of this meaty newsletter could reimburse you for your annual membership fee and maybe even earn you thousands of dollars.

Here’s how you can use the SPAWN Market Update to promote your book.

  1. Read each issue from cover to cover. Every first of the month, go to the member area of the SPAWN Web site, print out the Market Update and read it at your leisure. Circle those resources, tips, opportunities, etc. that you wish to pursue and follow up on them. Or read the Market Update online so you can access the links immediately.

    Maybe you are promoting a chick lit book. The July Market Update lists three sites that review chick lit books. Follow the links to potential review opportunities, which could lead to good exposure and sales. While reading last month’s Market Update, you may notice that Victoria, a women’s lifestyle magazine, is back after a four-year hiatus. Perhaps the editors would review your chick lit book, run an excerpt or interview you for an article.

    Maybe you’re in the process of producing a business book and want to include a DVD. If you study the July 2007 issue of the Market Update, you’ll discover a new technique for inserting the DVD during the binding process—eliminating the extra step necessary for gluing an inside pocket. This could save you money in production and provide you with a good selling feature.

    Are you running out of ideas for promoting your historical novel, children’s book, nonfiction book, memoir or horror story? Maybe the free Google Alerts service will spark some fresh promotional ideas. The July issue introduces this concept to you. I’ve been using it to gather information, resources, ideas and perspective related to the publishing industry for upcoming issue of the Market Update as well as for promoting my own writing/publishing-related books.

  2. Open your mind. As you peruse the Market Update each month, view each item as a potential promotional opportunity. In the July edition, you’ll notice that I mentioned quite a few new magazines and changes within the magazine industry. Rather than whisking past these listings and assuming that they relate to freelance writers and not to you, reconsider. Did you notice the new magazine for single mothers? If you are the author of a health or fitness book, one on family law, diet/nutrition, spirituality, money management or relationships, you could possibly get some publicity for your book by writing an article for SM: The Magazine for Single Mothers. If yours is a fiction book, consider submitting some short stories to the new Noctem Aeternus Magazine or BOFFM, for example. If your book relates to writing and publishing, you’ll surely be interested in writing articles for Wow! Women on Writing or Angela Hoy’s newsletter, Writer’s Weekly.

  3. Use the search feature. All 68 issues of the market update are archived. That’s around 800 pages or approximately 2,500 resources, information bites and news items. Use the search feature, at the top of the page, to search out promotional opportunities for your chick lit book, war stories, memoir, historical novel, young adult novel, children’s book, nonfiction spiritual or self-help or how-to books, for example. An hour spent doing this could result in numerous book reviews, article/story submissions and a wide variety of other promotional ideas and resources. An hour each day for a week could provide an incredible array of promotional activities to pursue.

    Check out the May 2004 and November 2006 editions of the SPAWN Market Update for book review resources. Be sure to read the June 2006 issue for tips on finding review opportunities. This suggestion alone could result in dozens of reviews for your book and hundreds of sales. If you don’t read the monthly SPAWN Market Update you could miss out on hundreds of book selling opportunities.

    To use the search feature, click on the red, white and blue search bar at the top of the page, type in your keyword, "review sites," "book festival directory," "chick lit," "horror," "book promotion," etc. and click on the "Do it!" button. When you find a reference you’d like to check out, click on the blue line where it says, "Market Update" and the date.
  4. Be creative. It’s typical to believe that your creative endeavors are over when you shift from writing to promotional mode. In reality, as promoters, we must turn up those creative juices. We need to look at every new idea or resource as a potential promotional opportunity. Without becoming too scattered, we must widen our promotional horizons and consider all possibilities. Maybe you’ve never done a book signing—you’ve heard they aren’t worthwhile. If you do a little research about book signings, however, and discover why some of them fail, you might figure a way to have a few successful signings locally. Perhaps you’ve resisted participating in book festivals, giving live presentations or sending out review copies because you aren’t familiar with the concept. This is no time to stay inside your comfort zone. Venture out, fellow authors! Try some of the new promotional tactics we present in the SPAWN Market Update and find creative ways to make them work for you.

Are you doing everything you can to promote your book or are you one of the approximately 948,000 authors who will sell less than 100 copies of their book this year? Here are the facts: In 2004, 76% of all books in print sold fewer than 100 copies. And this is not necessarily because these are poorly written books. It’s not necessarily because these books don’t have an audience. It is primarily because the authors gave up on promotion.

Be a proactive promoter. Read all current and back issues of the SPAWN Market Update and pursue those promotional activities that make sense for your project.



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