Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Advance Marketing and Sales Information

Captain’s Log, Stardate 05.24.2006

Blog book giveaway:
My Thursday book giveaway is ONCE UPON A CHOCOLATE KISS by Cheryl Wolverton.
My Monday book giveaway is A GIRL’S BEST FRIEND by Kristin Billerbeck.
You can still enter both giveaways. Just post a comment on each of those blog posts. On Thursday, I'll draw the winner for ONCE UPON A CHOCOLATE KISS and post the title for another book I'm giving away. Stay tuned.

What Zondervan needs from me:
Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water...

So here I was, thinking I’d never need to do a stupid one page synopsis ever again now that I’m contracted, right? Guess what they need by September 15th for the next book in the series:

** My current bio (no problem, I love talking about myself)

** A one or two-sentence summary (You mean like a pitch??? One of those 30-second things that I never thought I’d need to do again?)

** A completed Marketing Information Form (Okay, I just got this, and it’s a TON of stuff. A lot of character things—what they look like, personal items, temperament/personality, what they’d typically wear, all the inconsequential details filled out on my character charts somewhere...Then also back-cover copy and short blurbs for marketing to use for catalogs and website copy.)

** A chapter excerpt (My best chapter—which should be my first chapter—that introduces the atmosphere of the novel, the characters, the setting.)

** A one-page book summary for marketing/ promotional purposes (Wait a minute—you mean like a one page synopsis??? I thought my one-page horrors were over once I dropped from the contest circuit, because proposals are typically a 2-3 page synopsis, and an optional chapter-by-chapter synopsis. I am sadly disillusioned. The dreaded S-word never goes away.)

Some of this stuff is redundant with the Marketing Information Form—for instance, the MIF also asks for a short summary and a chapter excerpt. I’m thinking that the MIF and some of this other stuff might go to separate places, but don’t quote me on that.

Now, before Robin smacks me upside the head, I’m not complaining. This is really cool stuff. I just had some preconceived notions about what nasty things might go away once I had a house to develop me as an author. Haha. Silly me.

TMI:

Writing: Still revising. Had a great talk with Sue Brower on the phone today about my Marketing Info Form for my cover! Let me say right now, THAT IS SO WEIRD.

I’m not one of those writers who fantasizes about what her cover will look like. I just don’t want something that gives away all the good parts of the book, and that doesn’t look dark and gloomy.

It’s just strange to think about what I want for my cover. It’s like it’s now starting to sink in that this thing will actually be printed and bound.

And in a second I’m going to start panicking about letting Zondervan down. I just want to do my best so they sell a lot of books and justify all their time and effort in me. It’s in God’s hands, I know that, but I just don’t want to disappoint them.

10 comments :

  1. Funny. I've totally planeed my cover, fully knowing that it will probably never be. How much fun are you having!?!

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  2. Thanks, Camy, for keeping us in the loop. It's fun to hear all the inside stuff.

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  3. Camy, thanks for providing this information.

    As a book reviewer those blurbs help us determine what to include when we write our synopsis for your review. If there are things you want to save for your readers(red herrings other suprises,) we will notice it when we receive the blurb from your publicist. And won't give your darlings away.

    It also helps me decide which books I want to accept for review, and which books might be a good fit for a specific magazine edition I might be writing for. For instance, Claudia Burney's book would be a great fit for our Male issue at Anointed Mag, because Jazz is such an awesome male love interest. Or like when Angela Benson wrote an article in Precious Times Magazine(another place I write) about church abuse for our Church issues edition.

    When you can transcribe your story into a quick sentence or three, you have a better chance of getting more copy opportunities. Well, at least from me.

    Happy writing.

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  4. Oh man! So NOT fair! I'm laughing because I am writing synopses (yes, plural) for three books I haven't written. It's excruciating. It makes me want to hurl! (er, in a nice way?)

    The truth? The hard work never ends. Thankfully, and I think I'm speaking for both of us, we LOVE what we do enough to endure marketing forms.

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  5. Oh, man! You burst my bubble, too. At least all the character profiles I do might come in handy some day.

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  6. It really must be a scary thing to get your baby ready to perform. I feel like that at any interview. I get so terrified that I flunked two interviews completely. And it can be very embarrassing, especially when you hear this young thing who's about half your age mimicking: "I want to help these immigrant women" as you go out the door. Actually, I almost turned around and said to her, "What are *you* doing here with that kind of attitude? Are you going to make fun of the women you're supposed to be helping?" By that time I was so furious I could have done bodily harm to someone. I knew I hadn't got the job so I really had nothing to lose except my dignity, self-respect and my witness for the Lord. So I got out of there as fast as I could.

    God really helped in the next and last interview I ever had. I had to do an accounting test before the interview and I guess I must have passed that with flying colors because I got no weird questions and did not have to prove myself anymore in the interview. And believe me, I'll never go for another.

    I think justifying your book's life must be similar to that. "How do you think you can benefit our company?" Only here it would probably be: "Why do you think people will enjoy your book?"

    I'm so happy for you that you've got the proverbial "foot in the door" now.

    That's what I hated too: doing synopses of anything but it can be a useful took for any essay; a little more difficult for fiction as I've found when I've reviewed books. Yeah, I can do that since I don't have to make up the story myself.

    Are you working on your next book already? And do you know when this first one is scheduled to come out? You actually might have mentioned it but my mind is spotty right now. Too much stress.

    Hugs and prayers.

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  7. Hey, Camy.
    I know, I know. The elevator pitch is still important (you use it when you do interviews or chat with customers at signings), the synopsis is still needed, back cover copy is needed....EVER so much like writing a proposal.

    (I'd WAY rather write an entire novel than a proposal and synopsis).

    But the good news is that you KNOW this is all going to support your ultra-cool novel. :-)

    Hugs, Sharon

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  8. Camy,

    As the four year old says,

    "Sit in peace podition, and belax."pb

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  9. Ha. hahahahhaha....
    Okay, mean laughter done - I really love you and I am so glad you are going through this in order to warn the rest of us what may lie ahead. :)
    Of course, it's enough to 'almost' make me glad I'm not published. But not really.
    God allowed you to get to this point, so He will give you the grace, patience and all the sushi you need to get you through filling out that form and writing those synopses.
    You can do it!!
    'Go, Camy, Go, Camy, Go Camy - woot woot!!'
    Does that help???

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  10. I'm laughing, and smiling. SURE, we authors just get to WRITE the books, huh? For me, the MOST fun has been writing the dedication page. :)

    The synopsis is still painful, but it's my road map with occasions for (short) detours.

    The back cover/inner cover copy is also a kick in the butt. Which is why they always say to learn to condense your book into a sentence, then into 50 words or less. And SAVE that info. You'll need it.
    Lynette--
    who is still giddy after getting her case of AUTHOR COPIES in the mail. :)

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