Don Tolle continues his fascinating blog on For the Record and his experience with marketing and publishing his book.
For the Record was published nine months ago in April 2014, and I’m currently fully engaged in my marketing campaign. I opted into the social networking marketing campaign offered by iUniverse and was tutored for three months, in which time I learned a whole new skill set and appreciation for internet marketing. It’s true, there’s a lot of noise and competition out there, but it’s also a fact that you can’t score unless you show up and participate. We’re all being carried along in the same stream, so you’d better start swimming. I’ve also found book signings to be fun and gratifying. Though reluctant in the beginning, I’ve done several now and find I enjoy them tremendously. Among other things, they’ve given me a new insight into the bookstores, the critical role they still play in the success of any book, and the thrill I experience every time I sign one of my books for a new reader. I also find the simple act of walking into a bookstore unannounced with a hardcover in hand, introducing myself to the manager as the author of a new book, while soliciting him/her to please consider ordering a few copies for the shelf, rewarding. It feels like progress, like I’ve helped my child today.
Although I enjoyed each phase of the publishing experience, the editing process was the most fulfilling. I found it to be essentially the same process as in songwriting. Once the first draft of a song is on the page, the rewriting begins, refining the narrative and melody, eliminating lyrics that don’t particularly add anything, and the overall crafting and polishing to completion. It was a pleasure working in partnership with my editors throughout, and in addition to shaping and improving my manuscript, I learned a great deal in the process, which I will carry with me to my next book.
The experience of publishing For the Record with iUniverse was both a reward for having written my book, as well as a revelation to me. I love working with talented, passionate, professional people, and that is what I experienced throughout with the staff at iUniverse. They were conscientious, committed, and clearly dedicated to helping me fulfill a dream that I’ve carried around inside of me for many years. As a writer, it doesn’t get any better than that.
My advice to other aspiring authors is to just write, about anything. The most important step we take on the way to achieving a goal – is the first. Everything we commit to the page doesn’t necessarily have to be the beginning of a book. Don’t make it any more complicated that it really is. If you are disciplined, and committed to finding the book inside of you, a daily regimen of writing will lead you to your book. That was my experience. Follow your passion, believe in your dream, and trust your instincts, always.