Patrick G Cox

Sales and Marketing

I'm told that every author - except, perhaps, those on the "Best Seller" lists - has to put as much effort, if not more, into marketing and selling his or her work as they devote to creating it. So it is flattering to get a call from a small independent book store asking if you can supply a copy of your book for a customer. The fact that it wasn't an English or British Book Shop I think makes it a little bit more special. I've been happy to oblige and asked them to consider stocking, on a 'sale or return' basis copies of all my other books. I also asked how they found me and was pleased to learn they'd done an internet search and found this site, then my Facebook page and my other blog. At the moment they aren't stocking any more of my books, but hopefully the word is now spreading.

Yesterday I received a list, from another friend, of possible contacts with book reviewers for a number of newspapers, both national and local, so my next step is to begin working through that to get my work "out there" in newspaper reviews and, hopefully, noticed by potential buyers. Who knew being an author meant being a salesman? It seems that this is, in fact, the way the Publishing Industry has gone in recent years, authors are now part of the sales team, in some cases, they are selling themselves rather than any specific book on their catalogue of work and I have it on very good authority that even the very big "names" in the literary world have to keep promoting themselves. Such, I would guess, is the nature of today's 'celebrity' status. It can vanish as quickly as mist if not maintained.

That leaves open the question of exactly how does one balance one's creative writing, marketing, selling and any sort of family life? The answer seems to be; 'with difficulty.' Especially if one is also having to earn a living to support oneself and one's passion for writing. At least I have some support in that direction, but it is still a tricky balance.

Right, so, today is the first day of a new drive to ascend the cliff face of recognition. Back to work ... 

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