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Posts Tagged ‘good news’

Debi's Book Cover Collage

After taking a social media workshop at this year’s Cape Cod Writers Conference, then receiving tips and hints from my friend Elizabeth Butts, I finally felt confident to complete the set-up of my FB Author Page and publish it to the world.

As a follower of my blog, would you please click on the above link and ‘like’ my new page?

Watch there for photos of author events and news about my novel ‘The Uninvited Guest’ as I find new venues to place my story into the hands of mystery readers. I’ll also be posting interesting articles that are writing-related.

THANX!

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scaredy-catDuring the Cape Cod Writers Conference, I attended a class to learn about various Social Media as they relate to writers. One such outlet is an Author Page on Facebook.

Back home, I managed to register my author portrait and also a collage of the book cover from ‘The Uninvited Guest’ as the header image. But I need more content before I ask my regular FB ‘friends’ to like my new page.

The instructor emailed the link to my Amazon page, but I have yet to attempt the registration of the link.

All right, I admit it… I’m a Scaredy-Cat!

Fortunately, I discovered that the Ames Free Library in Easton, MA, offers one-on-one workshops with patrons who are seeking a comfort zone for FaceBook. I’ve signed up for a session next Thursday, and hope to come away with enough confidence to complete the set-up and release my Author Page to the world.

 

 

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fingers on keyboardYesterday, as I basked in the perfect summer weather of southeastern New England, I browsed the news app on my cell phone. At the bottom of the list, I found a section devoted to my town of Norton from various sources in the surrounding area.

When I clicked into the ‘Patch’ news article, I noticed an offer to send breaking local news to my cell phone or desktop, and registered my email address.

Upon receiving the first news-bite, another offer popped up to advertise an event electronically to all the surrounding towns who have their own version of the Patch.

Well, I submitted my registration request, received my log-in information this morning, and have posted my participation in Local Author Day at the Ugly Dog Books in Attleboro, MA, on July 30 at 4pm.

How easy! And FREE!

Check it out…you may have a similar marketing opportunity in your hometown.

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book club at tableAfter the successful author talk and book signing with the local garden club, the Ugly Dog Bookstore, and a private Girls Night Out last month, I dove into chasing down additional events. Friends were anxious to advise their connections of who to ask and where to go to share my story! Most organizations need a speaker for an upcoming meeting, and have been glad that I dropped into their laps!

To entice the program director of non-bookstore organizations to schedule me into her events calendar,  I offered 15% of books sold during her event. Not only will I cost them nothing as a speaker, but they will receive a small donation as a result of their book sales!

Not every contact gets back to me on a timely basis, requiring a follow-up email or phone call. But the results have been quite satisfactory. Here’s a list of interviews/author talks/book signings scheduled for the coming weeks:

Feb 26… ‘Books and the World’ cable interview, Cape Cod, MA

March 16…Allentown Public Library, Allentown, PA

March 19…Brandywine Community Library, Topton, PA

March 22…Kutztown Community Library, Kutztown, PA

March 31…Ames Free Library, Easton, MA

 

Am I supposed to be having this much fun?

 

Happy reading and writing!

Debi

 

 

 

 

 

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Dec 2015 Box of BooksNow that my novel is published — as evidenced by the ten boxes of soft cover books stashed in my closet — I’ve been contacting various organizations to schedule author talk/book signing events. Lots of groups are seeking speakers for their monthly meetings, so this part of the marketing plan has been quite satisfying.

The local garden club scheduled me to speak at their March meeting, but when their January speaker broke her kneecap and had to cancel, the club’s organizer asked if I could step in at the last minute. Of course, I said ‘Of course!’

To prepare, I created a list of points to address and reviewed it with my writers group. With their additional suggestions, I rewrote the topics onto colored index cards, which kept me organized as I moved from one card to the next. I strayed only a few times when a funny anecdotes came to mind.

On that cold and windy night, seventeen club members braved the elements to attend, sitting entranced as I spoke about the reason I decided to write a mystery and the source of my initial idea. I explained the various stages of digging into research, developing the setting, creating the characters, firming up the plot, working with an editor, and the final steps of publishing. Of the 14 softcover books that I brought with me, only three were carried back home. I consider that a success for my first time out!

With additional author talks in the planning stages, here are a few already written on the calendar:

…end of January, bookstore in Attleboro, MA

…mid March, my sister’s library in Topton, PA [working to schedule other venues that same week while I’m in the area]

…end of March, library in Easton, MA

…early April, library in Mansfield, MA

…end of April, Friends of Senior Center, Norton, MA

In addition, I’m waiting to hear from Women of Today groups, senior centers, other local libraries, the women’s link of my local Chamber of Commerce, and a private book club. Also, the past president of a national mystery book exchange club has suggested me to her local library in Cranberry, NY, which may end up as a summer program. Plus a member of my writers group introduced me to her friend from Schenectady, NY, who has put me in touch with her local bookstore for a possible summer event. And finally, I’m waiting for a response from the director of my hometown library in Smyrna, DE.

As each organization moves from a potential venue to a scheduled author talk, my excitement mounts.

How much fun is this?

 

 

 

 

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Jan 12, 2016 updated to include complete Amazon address.

 

Well, after years of plotting & writing, conferences & writers groups, TUG Front Cover Onlymy story… ‘The Uninvited Guest’… has been published through Riverhaven Books in Whitman, Massachusetts. Such a thrill to see it listed on Amazon as a paperback and e-book!

http://www.amazon.com/Uninvited-Guest-Debi-Graham-Leard/dp/1937588505/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1452610802&sr=1-1&keywords=debi+graham-leard

For the purpose of book signing events, I opted to print 400 books locally.  What a thrill to pick up the ten boxes from the print shop! My trunk will hold a box of books at all times for those unplanned opportunities to place my story into the hands of an avid mystery reader, along with a 2-sided bookmark.

And now onto the task of marketing. Area bookstores, local libraries, senior centers, and women’s groups are on my list to contact. Some of them are bound to be interested in a debut local author to speak about writing a mystery with a book-signing event afterwards.

As it happens, my sister is involved with her local library in eastern Pennsylvania, and has already put me in contact with their Friends president, who is excited about planning an event. After we solidify her date in late March, I’ll approach the other libraries in the Berks County system for a possible event at their location while I’m in the area.

In addition, as a member of Sisters in Crime, I have joined their Speakers Bureau, and look forward to participating in author panels around New England during the coming months.

For all of you who have been following my progress over the past few years, I hope you’re as thrilled as I am!

Happy New Year to everyone!

Debi

 

 

 

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hands on laptop…my road to self-publication that is.

Riverhaven Books forwarded an analysis of my story by one of their editors.

First the good news:

The author has a well-conceived mystery. There are very good twists and turns, especially at the end. The writing is straight-forward and follows a logical structure. There will be little required in terms of correcting punctuation or grammar.

And now the not-as-good news:

However, I think there is developmental work to be done. I would recommend that the author work on character development, backstory, subtlety in dialogue, and that she check with law enforcement professionals on some of the legal practices described, as some don’t ring true.

I can either try to develop these improvements on my own, or hire this same editor to work with me. Her 10-hour contract costs $30 per hour…sounds like a good investment to me!

I’ll keep you posted as we move along!

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