Author Marketing: The last hundred hours

In Release Your Writing, I refer to several concepts that continue to generate feedback year after year.

Last week I wrote here about the need to continue promoting your book, for years, not weeks after it launches. In the book, I suggest you do one thing each week and one larger task each month, to keep the book alive. You can read last week’s post for inspiration if you’re currently marketing your book.

Today, lets talk about my concept: “the last hundred hours.” It refers to all the work left to do on your book once you ‘think’ it is is complete.

The Last 100 Hours

When you finally have the text nailed down, and your chapters flow, it still takes about 100 hours for reader feedback, final review and editing, reading cover-to-cover, chasing down citations, and submitting for publication. Even writers with a traditional publisher need that huge time push at the end.

Don’t get scared though. It’s not 100 hours without sleep, just two to three weeks where you won’t watch TV, open the mail or read the newspaper. You will use all your available time for the final push to publication, because you’re so close to being finished, and it feels so good.

Maybe you’re tired of revising, or up against your deadline. This is not the time to rush. Your book has taken shape from a dream to a reality, but the professional editing, formatting and last minute clean up should not be rushed. Even when you think you’re done, print the manuscript, put it in a binder, and read it cover-to-cover, or read it aloud. If you love it, and you know your target audience, your readers will love the book too.

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Author Marketing: What’s on your list this month?

In Release Your Writing, I refer to several concepts that continue to generate feedback year after year.

One is the concept of “the last 100 hours” which I’ll post here next week. It refers to all the work left to do on your book once you ‘think’ it is is complete.

The other comes up almost every week in my work with authors. People write a good book, I consult or assist in getting it published, and spend time discussing the marketing involved to keep the book alive. But for a few people, when they reach that point, they think they are “done!”  The reality is, you can’t believe people will buy your book just because it is on Amazon.

So, to reiterate the essential concept from Release Your Writing, here it is again:

“Susan Driscoll (formerly president of iUniverse,)  notes that word-of-mouth, the top-selling factor for most books, takes that long to reach a peak. So don’t plan to sit back and wait for future sales if you’re not actively promoting the book. As the publishing adage goes: “Your book stops selling when you stop selling it.”

“Keep working the web. Do one thing a month, every month, to increase your exposure. Although your book will be on major online retail sites, you can leverage the broad reach of the web by cross listing, and linking to your book in all reviews you post online for colleagues and friends.

“Seek reviews; get in stores online and across the country. Write articles in newsletters, magazines and newspapers to get press. Work your affiliations by joining organizations that will increase your exposure and let you learn from others in your field.”