The kids have completed four weeks of school since last month. My daughter made the cross-country team, church youth group and cub scouts have started back up, as well as my church small group and my husband’s tennis team, so we jumped back into a hectic schedule after summer break. I’m not complaining, though, it’s wonderful to have so many opportunities available again.
I’ve also spent the last month completing everything for my book, including gaining ARC (Advanced Readers Copy) readers, setting up e-book preorders and paperback formatting, creating and ordering bookmarks and stickers, and posting all over social media. Promoting myself isn’t comfortable to me, but I’m doing my best and learning along the way. And since my book officially released September 13th (!), I’m making this month’s Share Four Somethings, Take a Chance on Me-themed.
I really wanted to create bookmarks for my books because I’m a book nerd and thought it’d be really cool. I modeled them after my book covers and added QR codes so they can also share information about the books. They turned out so nice and I’m enjoying passing them out. (If you want some, send me a message!)
I learned so much this past month. I took part in my first BookFunnel promotion (where you give out free copies of books to people and encourage them to join your newsletter subscriber list). It amazed me how much it increased my list size. Time will tell if they enjoy the book enough to get the next in the series.
I looked into how to sell signed copies of the book, create stickers, and setting up a giveaway for a Take a Chance on Me Swag Box (there’s still time to enter if you’re interested in a free signed copy of the book along with a few other items related to the book – stickers, socks, chocolate truffles from my favorite local shop, recipes from the book, and an Asheville art print created by local artist Jeff Pittman – find out details here – giveaway ends 9/27/22).
This whole endeavor has been an exercise in bravery. I’m sharing a part of myself with the world and know the feedback won’t all be positive. Thankfully, I already have some experience with criticism regarding my work, so that won’t be new. Still, it’s never pleasant.
I emailed some authors I like who also write sweet romance books and asked them to help promote my book. Several agreed to share information in their newsletter and/or share on social media. It felt a little scary reaching out, but the worst they could say is no (and I heard that as well).
This obviously won’t come as a surprise, but my achievement was officially publishing my first novel! It’s been a three-year process, from first draft to editing to querying to indie publishing, but I crossed the finish line! I’m looking forward to doing it again with the next book in the series. I’ve learned a lot and hope to take what knowledge I’ve gained with me to make my next launch go more smoothly. But, while it’s great to keep moving forward, I’m also taking time to celebrate where I am and how far I’ve come.
Tell me about something you’ve loved, gleaned, braved, or achieved recently!