Self-Publishing Part 12: How the Book Hunts for 500 Buyers, a Real Time Break

by wlancehunt in Personal Narrative

Going it Mostly Alone: the Publishing Path of A Perfect Blindness

So far, this path to publication has relied mostly on an extended flashback, with occasional forays into general truths. Today will be a break into present time, with a quick step back a couple of weeks to prepare for what is happening now.

The quick step back: two and a half years ago, when I started the process of publishing A Perfect Blindness, I’d purchased a Public Relations package. I then promptly forgotten that about. Lotta bucks to lose sight of, but it happened.

Once I remembered, I got in touch with iUniverse who put me in touch with Lavidge, the people actually running the 6-week campaign. So started the emails leading to a questionnaire, which grew to 25 pages, plus more material I’d already generated.

The questions dig into any possible leads and angles to pursue.

After starting with the basic facts about the book, it

moved to me as the author

  • Professional life
  • Personal life
  • Any affiliations I might have
  • Any Relevant research (Music, Venues & Place in Time: Chicago, 1988)
    • I gave them lists of bands and songs used somehow in the book, plus 2 playlists (still growing) on 4 platforms: Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, and 8tracks.
    • I listed for them locations used, including restaurants, clubs, bars and music venues, some closed, others moved, a few still running and a couple made up.

Then came questions about online presence:

Then, my personal and professional goals

Then, my professional and lifestyle credentials

Only then does it move on to asking directly about the book

  • Why I wrote it
  • A Synopsis
  • 5 key messages
  • Most controversial aspect
  • Themes relevant to current events (plenty—especially about competing views of a person or fact)

Then, about what I can or can’t (will or will not) do to promote it:

  • Speak in public—yep
  • Based on my life—in time and place, yes; my life, not so much
  • How is it different from other similar books?
  • Any specific points members of the media should know?

Then, for interviews:

  • How I’d react to poor review? (To each his own)
  • Travel? How far? Who’s paying?
  • Topics I’m qualified to talk about (both in and outside of book) Wine
  • 3-5 things I want the media to know
  • 6-8 questions I’d like to be asked
  • Any Professional Social Media info, such as FB Pages?

After the paper interrogation, I got a call from Lauren and Kalin, the two people in charge of the campaign.

Starting with questions they had from the materials I sent them, I answered questions about how to position the book, its competition, primary and secondary audiences, and themes, plus positioning myself as a writer, anything to allow the PR person to do her job.

Then, I waited for them to produce tentative documents for approval, which eventually lead to this press release—Gritty New Literary Novel Pays Homage to 80s Chicago Music Scene.


If you hired someone for PR was it very different from this?

If you not, how did you handle preparing for the push?


Know someone who might like this? Post it or Forward this email to let them in on it.

To ask a question or follow along with the self-publishing adventure, join the “Publishing Path of A Perfect Blindness” here.

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