Wednesday, June 4, 2014

IWSG: Many Thanks and a Fear Spiral

Many thanks to the fearless Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh and his co-hosts for IWSG!!! And for those who run the website and the facebook page, many thanks to you as well!

And many, super, huge thanks to DL and the Blitz Team! You rocked my blog yesterday, and I don't think there are enough words to express how thankful I am!!!!


However I still have a fear this month: I'm a terrible marketer. My friends and family must be tired of the tweets, facebook posts, blog posts, and even, yes, e-mails, about my second novel, Champion in Flight.

And yet, I received a message last week from a distant friend.

"I'm so excited for you getting your first book published!"

Um, wait. She didn't know I published my first book last year? Even after I tweeted, posted, blogged, e-mailed, felt like an uber-obnoxious-salesperson?

So, I'm not a good book marketer. Some people have heard it to their eyeballs, and some haven't heard any of it.

And three days into my newest book release, the crickets are chirping.

 Seriously, crickets and frogs have a concert outside my house every night . . . and in addition to that, the books aren't selling. By not selling, I mean hold up both your hands, and then hide one behind your back. You are holding up more fingers than books that have sold.

And that's where the fear starts spiraling into a horrible attitude like this:

Maybe it's just the wrong book. Maybe even the reviews for the first one were just "nice" and not real. Maybe no one likes openly Christian fantasy. Maybe I should have written about vampires at war with zombies with a star-crossed undead lovers twist? Maybe I'm just a terrible writer. I don't know.

Ugh. Shudder. Shake it off. Focus.

I am still going to keep writing, keep marketing (obnoxious or not), and keep celebrating the awesome encouragement I have received.

And yes, I'm going to plug my book for just a moment, along with a few others that I know about:

Reborn (The Fate Challenges #1)
by Cherie Reich
To save a kingdom, a prophetess must challenge Fate.

Seventeen-year-old Phoenix Prophetess Yssa is cursed instead of blessed, and her duties at the Temple of Apenth prove it. Yet her boring temple life screeches to a halt when visions of her parents’ murders consume her. Yssa races across an ocean to stop the future. If she can’t change Fate, she’ll refuse to be the Phoenix Prophetess any longer. Fate, however, has other plans for her and the kingdom. Yssa must either accept her destiny or fight against Fate.

Now Available in Print and Ebook!
Print: Amazon /Barnes and Noble / Book Depository / Createspace

Broken Branch Falls
Gabe is an average fifteen-year-old goblin. He’s in the marching band, breezes through calculus, and gets picked on daily by the other kids at school, especially the ogres. Gabe’s closest friends are goblins like him, but Gabe is tired of being a goblin – he’d like to try other things. And he has his eye on the new ogress at school. It’s against all beastly rules, but there’s just something about her.

Coming on June 24th by Tara Tyler!

As part of a global, cross-industry promotional project for audiomachine’s upcoming public release, PHENOMENA—by celebrated composer, Paul Dinletir—we’re introducing a groundbreaking campaign to encourage the next generation of authors, artists & musicians! With each download of the upcoming FREE PHENOMENA companion ebook, audiomachine will make a donation to the LA Youth Orchestra.

Available today or tomorrow!

Put together by Samantha Redstreak Geary and featuring many bloggers we know!

Rachel Schiefelbien's Don't Fall

In this contemporary retelling of Rapunzel, seventeen-year-old Anya leads a secluded life in a house on the edge of town with her adopted mother. She doesn't go to public school, doesn't even have a best friend. But Anya doesn't seem to mind. She has her books, her photography, and her daydreams and would do anything to please her mom.

Annalisa Crawford's Our Beautiful Child

People end up in this town almost by accident. Ella is running away from her nightmares, Sally is running away from the memories of previous boyfriends and Rona is running away from university. Each of them seek sanctuary in the 18th century pub, The Boathouse; but in fact, that’s where their troubles begin.

Jack Lewis Baillot's cover reveal for A Test of Loyalty!

Upon learning he is one of the sons of the now dead king, Prince Lachlan is forced to leave the only home he has ever known. Fleeing for his life, his step-brothers a step behind, Lachlan finds safety and friendship with a young seamstress named Magda, a hermit, an Elf, and two Dwarf brothers. Determined to keep the young prince alive, Magda and the others seek out help in the surrounding Nations.

In Short Stories:
Milo James Fowler has several awesome stories out, but the latest two that I know about and have read and loved are: "Drawn from a World of Hurt" at Fiction Vortex and "Captain Quasar and the Fastest Thumbs on Zeta Colony Four" at Comets and Criminals.

And, Christine Rains has an excellent story out at Luna Station Quarterly. Check out "Ladgarda" - it's a great read.

Champion in Flight

A year after she won the battle for Septily, Clara feels trapped in Skycliff by the Allied Council. As the last pieces of information about the Healing Caves fall into place, Clara is attacked by an assassin. Covert Drinaii mercenaries and the Council aren’t going to stop Clara from her quest to heal her broken blade. As Champion of Aramatir, she must act.
Meanwhile, in the joint kingdoms of Rrysorria and Wylandria, the youngest and still cursed swan prince despairs of ever being whole again. In a moment of anger and desperation, Liam discovers a blood link between him and a dark sorceress.
Clara won the battle for Septily, but her battle isn’t over.


What do you think is the best way to market your writing? Have you ever been blitzed? Isn't it awesome?
And . . . if you could choose a favorite way to fly, what would be your choice and why? Griffin? Dragon? Millennium Falcon? Enterprise? Cessna?

And do you have news to share? I'm planning on starting a monthly (I can't keep up otherwise) feature on my blog for blog/author news so I can showcase everyone's accomplishments. If you have news to share, please e-mail me at

And if you are a blitzer - THANK YOU!!!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Just keep after it. Sometimes it's a slow build. Keep doing guest posts and spreading the word that way.

Julie Flanders said...

I feel the same way about marketing. It's so tough sometimes! But I've been seeing Flight all over the blogosphere so word is definitely spreading. Good luck!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I feel your pain. I hate marketing. I hate self-promotion. I know a lady who can market like a queen, sell her book to the illiterate. Me? I feel like I am wearing a neon sign that says I'm a blow hard if I'm even asked about my books. Don't know the answer, though the thought comes to about letters to Sunday schools? Or Bible groups? Try to find your target audience. I never have a problem with openly Christian anything and I don't think you should change your genre for nuthin'. It's evidently what your moved to right and you keep working and one day, He will make it happen (that's what I tell myself!).

Barbara Watson said...

It's a tough balance, I'm sure. Keep doing what you love and doing your best at the parts of that that you don't love.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Look at it this way - maybe now your friend will go back and buy the first book in addition to the second one! :)

Just do the best you can. Keep planting those seeds. You never know what will grow from them.

Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption

cleemckenzie said...

You could do like Rush Limbaugh did and give away 15,000 books. Now there's some marketing for you.

Keep at it. I know about your books. :-)

Sherry Ellis said...

It takes a while to get things rolling, but keep at it!

Happy Blitz Day!

Emma Adams said...

Yep, I can relate to this. Marketing is definitely not my strong point! It often takes a while to spread the word. Keep celebrating all you've achieved! :)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Don't lose hope. The word is still spreading.

Nick Wilford said...

I wish I knew what to say. It's kind of something I'm dreading if I do ever get ready for release, but on the other hand I like a challenge! What I heard was to have shorter gaps between books, so get on to the next part if you haven't already. As others have said, some things can be a slow burner. I've bought Champion in the Darkness and I'll be getting Flight soon!

M.J. Fifield said...

I'm going to be a terrible marketer. I know this because I should already be a marketer, and I keep procrastinating on that like I've never procrastinated before. Which is really saying something because I am a master procrastinator.

Hang in there...word is spreading, and these things can take time. You'll get there.

Anonymous said...

I don't think I'd do very well as a marketer either. Whatever you do, don't change genres. Write what you love. Sometimes it just takes a little time for word to spread. I still haven't been able to start your first book yet because I have a couple in front of it, but I'm sure I'm going to love it.

Have a wonderful day. Hugs to you. Eva

Natalie Aguirre said...

I don't look forward to the marketing either. Hang in there. Things will get better. Maybe consider a blog tour through a blog tour company to get the word out about your book to people you aren't in contact with and don't know about your books.

S.K. Anthony said...

The marketing aspect of this career kills me! I think our expectations and reality are very different, keep that chin up and keep going. Book news is still spreading and it will work out soon enough. Congrats again, you have multiple books published!!! Woot!

Maurice Mitchell said...

Sometimes we forget to brag to those closest to us Tyrean. It sounds scary and fun at the same time.

Laura Clipson said...

So sorry I missed your blitz, I hardly ever get to blog on Tuesdays! Happy belated blog blitz!
More people will buy it as more people hear about it; you'll get there. As for marketing, I have zero experience with that so far so I can't really help you!

Juneta Key said...

I was told you do not really start seeing money till your 10th book, after you have a backlist for midlist authors. I know an author who used Jeff Walkers Project Launch formula to successfully launch her book campaigns, which was a tremendous push for getting seen and building a list. It works for all kinds of businesses, but it also works for the writer/artist. You can check it out at this link

He has a book coming out end of June, which is the cheapest way to learn about his launch formula. He changed the marketing world with this formula. His success story is awesome. I bought a pre-order copy of the book. I would love to buy his course and webinars, when they are available, but right now cannot afford that, but I keep up with the news through newsletters, and learn lots anyway. It is one way to learn how to sell and market on top of the social media ways and advertising.

You have books published, and that is the first most important step. The rest will come. Its a process just keep at it. Never give up.

Juneta at Writer's Gambit

Lisa said...

I wish I had marketing advice to offer. I am in process of working on that as well and hate it. Just takes up time I could be writing. But oh well. Part of the writing life. I like your attitude! Keep on keeping on and don't give up. Doesn't sound like you're going to give up any time soon! I like Juneta's advice here in your comments. Think I'll check him out too! What I love about blogging, a world of information at your fingertips!

Lisa said...

Oh, and also, I've never been blitzed! What is that and how does it work?

Steven said...

I understand what you mean. It's painful, but I've come to the conclusion that you have to keep moving forward and always work to become a better writer. There are plenty of horrible writers who sell lots of books, so that's not really a definitive measure of talent. As for the marketing, nobody knows all the answers -- you have to find what works best for you.

Juneta Key said...

Hi I just thought I would add I know you have some books coming out. If you need someone to host your release on their blog. I more than glad to help out. Just let me know, you can contact me through my website, if interested, if not, that is okay too. Just putting it out there. Marketing and getting seen is hard I know.

Juneta at Writer's Gambit

Madibrown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Congrats on the new release. I know, marketing is a crap suit and I'm still trying to find the magic bullet. Good luck.

Tara Tyler R said...

look at all that awesome! thanks for putting me in there! and congrats, sweeite! here's to us!

Anonymous said...

Sorry I missed your blitz yesterday . . . been in editing purgatory :-( And yeah, those sales rankings can be discouraging. I'm much better at not looking at them *too much* anymore . . . as in every other day instead of every hour, lol. Good luck!

Stephanie Faris said...

Marketing sucks. Does anyone know what really works? Not really! All you can do is keep moving forward and hope it all works out somehow. It does take time for momentum to build...

Ella said...

It is such a game-hang in there! Is your first book free for a limited time to create a want for the 2nd one?!
Congrats and don't ever give up!

sjp said...

Some great books coming up, you'll get the knack for it!

Suzanne Sapsed said...

A griffin for me, something that would let me have the fun of flying in the open air but that could hold on tight too - a broom would undoubtedly end with me falling off it LOL!
Suzanne @ Suzannes-Tribe

D Biswas said...

I hear you-- I suck at marketing my writing as well.

I'll try and help with your book as much as I can with my blog-- would you drop me a mail at atozstories at gmail dot com?

Misha Gericke said...

Yeah believe it or not, I was in the exact same place as you in December.

Until my publishing house REALLY gave me something to fear.

I read an awesome post recently (but I wouldn't be able to find it if I tried, I'm afraid), that basically the way to keep going when books aren't selling is to take a long term view.

The only real way to market your book is to publish more books. Not twitter. Not blogger. Not anything else. Write another book. Clean it up. Publish again.

And remember (I'm assuming it's true for you or you would have spoken about giving up): You're writing for love, not for money.

Focus on that love and the fear does diminish.

Anonymous said...

My marketing is much better than it was years ago, but I still ponder my sales rankings and number of reviews. I want to keep at it and build a bigger following. Maybe I'll also write that big bestseller one day. I need to keep writing and be visible so that can happen.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Tyrean--sure there are going to be those who aren't interested or won't read anything christian based. But you know what? There is a whole section of readers who read only christian based stories. Forget about those who don't. They're not your audience.

I will tell you, I hate being beat over the head with THE BOOK with every tweet or FB post. To me it's hardsell and I hate that. I always say you're more than the current book you have out. You want to reach your target audience and that's by being you. Sharing your thoughts on what's important to you and it can be done without preaching or clobbering someone. Take something from your book--something lateral and share bits of background on it. You had to do research to write the books, right? well there has to be interesting tidbits in there to share. Mix it up with modern correlations--have we changed in ways we view whats important in our lives? Or something short on a tidbit and a question to your followers: what do you think? Share something fun you've done or discovered. Again a question: what have you done that's fun or what's your favorite thing to do on a weekend morning, a favorite meal, pastime, book, or character or...well anything. Get them involved. People like to give their opinions and thoughts. Just be sure you take the time to comment back on those FB statuses. It gives the note or FB status, or tweet, something of a personal touch. You want the readers to be attracted to you as a person not just your book. Why? because you want them also drawn to you as a person and you're so much more than your current book. Many are drawn to personalities first, and their writing second. Does it really matter how they come to be part of your readerbase? No, you simply want them to be a part of it.

Hang in there!

Sia McKye Over Coffee

Jeff Chapman said...

I feel your pain. Summer is usually a slow time on Amazon for downloads or sales, at least that's been my experience. Fall and winter are the best times. I wish I had the magic answer for you. I'm trying to build up a following through my email list. Thanks for signing up!! Focus on getting reviews with the goal of moving into the top-rated lists in one of your categories. Good luck.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks for your thoughts and your insights, Sia!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks for stopping by, Jeff. It's a challenge for each of us.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Yes, you're right Medeia. Keep writing!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thank you so much, Misha! I just needed to hear your words. I get caught up in the "marketing" panic, and I really just need to write. Thanks for sharing!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Wow! Thanks, D! I will do that!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Yes, something to hold onto is important!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks, SJP!

Tyrean Martinson said...

I did have my first book free last week, but then I took it off kindle select and re-loaded it at Smashwords because I'm hoping a broader base of readers will help. Not sure yet.
And thanks!

Tyrean Martinson said...

I agree with you on all points. We just need to keep writing. :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

I understand. There's so much to do, and it's definitely healthier not to look at those sales rankings.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks! Aren't we all?