01. May 2011 · Comments Off on Focusing on the Market · Categories: Uncategorized

So, after Saturday’s signing event for Daughter of Texas, I am coming to a decision – not to do any more single-store/single author events this year that are not already on my schedule. We packed it up after an hour and a half of sitting behind a table in an almost-deserted bookstore. Not the bookstore’s fault – there was another afternoon event which drew a large chunk of the normally expected Saturday crowd. I did manage to get through one-third of a book about the Irish on the 19th century frontier; which I might have bought, if the author had written more about the Irish in Texas.  Honestly, only two people even came up and talked to me during the whole hour and a half . . . and there were a great many other things that I could have been doing in that hour and a half;  working on chapter 12 of the sequel, Deep in the Heart, posting and commenting to various websites, working the social media angle. The excellent thing is that Daughter of Texas has sold big, during April, especially in the Kindle format. Working through Watercress and by extension, Lightning Source has let me price it at a competitive level and at an acceptable discount for distribution to the chain stores – and it is selling, a nice little trickle of sales, through thick and thin. In the last month there was also a massive up-tick in interest for the Trilogy and for Truckee, through the halo effect. All of my books have very high level of presence in search engines on various relevant terms . . . so, honestly, I believe now I would better be served by working more on internet marketing, on continuing to do book-talks, library talks, and book-club meetings – and the internet stuff. Doing a single author-table at a store does not pay off without massive local media interest. I have managed to score a little of that, but not enough to make an appearance at a local bookstore a standing-room-only event. I have one more such on the schedule, at the Borders in Huebner Oaks in June, but after that I will probably pull the plug on any more single-author book-store appearances.  I only have so much time and energy to allot to them. Joint appearances with other local authors; yes, indeedy, I’ll be there. Book-talks, book-club meetings, special events, special events like Christmas on the Square in Goliad, and Evening with the Authors in Lockhart, the West Texas Book and Music Festival in Abilene – and any other events that I am invited to . . . I’ll be there with bells on, and with my full table display and boxes of books. But the individual store events – at the moment, they’re just not paying off for me, relative to the time and effort spent on them.

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