Author Topic: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.  (Read 4951 times)  

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #75 on: February 18, 2017, 04:00:41 AM »
How to Create a Tagline for your Kindle Scout Campaign

You've got 45 characters including spaces for a tagline.

That's not a lot of real estate to work with.

Create several taglines over the course of several days. Give yourself some time in between efforts. It's amazing what a little break will give you in the form of fresh ideas.

Check the taglines used out on Kindle Scout to get some ideas too.

Then go run a poll in a group of reader/authors on facebook. It doesn't cost you anything.

Key: You're more likely to get feedback for a tagline than a blurb on facebook. A tagline poll doesn't take as much time to vote on.

Here are my results:




Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #76 on: February 18, 2017, 06:57:20 PM »
 I just posted this to my facebook page. Tomorrow, I'll send it out to my mailing list:

"I'm pumped! In a little over a week, I'll reveal the WINNING book cover and tell you how you can get a copy of "The Killdeer Connection" for FREE! In the meantime, enjoy some more of my book cover failures. Which of the two covers pictured here did people select hands down over the other? The answer may surprise you!"



Here's a link to the full article:

http://wp.me/p2J3jr-X5

Enjoy!

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #77 on: February 19, 2017, 04:40:45 AM »
Book Clubs:

You can find book clubs by searching for them in groups on facebook. Just enter "book club."

There are several that allow for author promotions. Just follow the rules. Look for some in your genre.

Tip: Check out MeetUp for book clubs in your area.

https://www.meetup.com/find/

In the scroll down, look for "book clubs."

I found a book club gem that's locally based. 850 members. Since my novel has a local presence in part, all the better. They have a facebook group that I joined.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #78 on: February 19, 2017, 02:22:24 PM »
Libraries

Search for local ones on facebook. Then facebook will suggest other local libraries. Follow them. When campaign time comes, contact them through facebook. If they won't (can't) post your info on facebook , email them a flyer. Have them post it on their bulletin board with links to your Kindle Scout campaign.   

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #79 on: February 20, 2017, 06:01:23 AM »
Twitter Tip

I've been following people who have engaged with my tweets and if they follow back they get an automatic (via crowdfire: free) direct message about my upcoming book. I ask them to respond if they are interested in supporting it and getting a free copy. If they respond that they are interested, I thank them and tell them I'll get back to them when it's available. Then I add them to a private twitter list to keep track and make it easy to tell them about the book when the campaign begins. In the past week, that has given me 40 good leads.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #80 on: February 22, 2017, 06:00:35 PM »
Okay, I went back and redid my blurb. I've lost count of how many times I've revised it.

"Burned-out lawyer David Thompson is on a mission to prove his innocence. Falsely accused of murder, he must desert his family to unearth the truth from a secret society of bird-watchers. When the feds talk of adding a terrorism charge, the death penalty looms and hes on the run from both the law and the real killer. On a wild ride through the oil fields of North Dakota, Thompsons quest to save his own skin explodes into a race to save the nation from a deadly tidal wave of terror. Buckle up!"

I've been creating some 6 second video ads to be used on twitter for my campaign.   Why 6 seconds? Becuase they automatically re-loop in a feed if they are under 6.5 seconds. I have not seen this done before. We'll see if it works.

Then I strung the 6 seconds ads together and made a trailer about 30 seconds long. I now have two video trailers. For whatever reason, I've gotten pretty good at doing videos. You have to wear many hats to be an independent author today. I think I'm an entire publishing house in one body, one mind.       
 

Offline AlexaKang

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #81 on: February 22, 2017, 07:56:15 PM »


I'm posting the article below on social media today and emailing it to my mailing list. I'm trying to build a little buzz about the book. I don't expect much response. But I'm trying to lay the groundwork for my campaign yet to come

If you've thought about whether or not to use a character's face on your book cover, you might be interested in reading it.

Pick out the book cover do you like better from the two above. Now read the article to see which one readers chose in this article and why:

http://wp.me/a2J3jr-WO

The results may surprise you.

Comment here if you'd like.

I tried to read your blog post but there's nothing there. Only your covers. WAs there an article to read?

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #82 on: February 23, 2017, 09:17:29 AM »
I tried to read your blog post but there's nothing there. Only your covers. WAs there an article to read?

Hi Alexa,

Bad link on my part.

Here's the correct one: http://wp.me/p2J3jr-WN

Thank you for calling it to my attention!

Tom

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #83 on: February 23, 2017, 01:11:56 PM »
Cover Reveal Vidoe

Like I said before, there's not much you can do with marketing a book visually. You try to make the most of what you're given. We all have a book cover. I have chosen not to release mine until the day my Kindle Scout campaign starts. I'm guessing that date will be a week from now for me.   

Today I began stringing all of my cover efforts in a video. You'll see each cover for 1/2 a second to be followed by another and so on. There are a lot of covers I explored but I'll show it in such a way that there is a logical progression. I'm glad I kept images of these covers. Why not put all that work to use if I can marketing the book?

I won't reveal the winning cover until the end of the video. But most likely people have to click on to my Kindle Scout page to see it. Then they can nominate my book if they so choose at the same time.

I'll have this cover reveal video plus two full-length (30 second) trailers.

Anything longer than 30 seconds is too long based on my experience.         

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #84 on: February 24, 2017, 04:29:17 AM »
Started working on the three questions I selected from the menu offered by Kindle Scout. Everybody should find three and work with them to get your message out.  If you are not using three, you're wasting an opportunity in my opinion. Each answer is limited to 300 characters including spaces.

Where did the idea for this book come from?

"Today, there are 25 million people in the USA who live in danger of being burned alive. This killer snakes across the country through small towns and major cities. It has killed dozens already. Locking your door won't save you. This is fact, not fiction. It's also the backdrop for my story."
« Last Edit: February 24, 2017, 11:49:10 PM by Tom Swyers »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #85 on: February 25, 2017, 03:31:32 AM »
Ugh,  I'm a few days away from submitting my book with all the supporting stuff to Kindle Scout and I'm ripping my hair out.  I went down a number of technology ratholes yesterday with youtube. They have something called endscreens now that allow you, among other things, to post a live link in the video for the last 20 seconds. I did not know this when I created my video. So I had to go back and delete the videos I'd done from youtube so there was room for the link to pop up without blocking the text in the video I had to figure out the pixel size as well for the link image: 300 x 300.  Then I discovered that I couldn't link to my Scout campaign because the link it didn't come from my website. I found a workaround to that issue through a plugin called "pretty link." It links the youtube link to my website and will then redirect it to my Kindle Scout campaign. Then I tested this out, and the link didn't work sometimes. Turns out, it takes a bit of time for the youtube link to function over the web though there are still some issues, The workaround is to make the link available in the tweet/post/description as well. 

So I figured all this out and wondered if I'd wasted a day doing it. But that's just it. You really don't know what will work the best for you until you start implementing some things during the campaign. It's like you're going to war and want as many weapons as possible at your disposal. Well, that's the mindset of a prepper anyway.  :)

I almost forgot about my manuscript. A few months ago, I'd become close to it as I worked and reworked it. Now the thing that brought me here seems so distant as I proofed it yesterday. I feel like I have become an on-line marketer promoting get-rich-quick schemes.   

Okay, here's another rathole that I fell into yesterday:


Posting Videos on Kboards

To embed a video on Kboards, you need to delete everything in the link to the left of the = sign, including the = itself.

So: 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pf7d4GIb-9w

becomes

pf7d4GIb-9w

Then, insert that shortened link between the YouTube tags in your dashboard. Done.

Took me forever to figure that out.


Book Trailer Fail

Since I've openly talked about my book cover fails, here's a book trailer fail I did last year. It has some nice special effects, but it fails. Why does it fail? To me, it just doesn't tell enough about the story or give enough information about my genre. Enjoy!

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXGCPXM7QOw" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXGCPXM7QOw</a>

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #86 on: February 26, 2017, 04:14:11 AM »
Finished question 2:

What is the inspiration for the story?

"At Standing Rock reservation in North Dakota, there's been a protest over the impact of fracking. Today, there are protests against fracking all around the world. I want the novel to capture the passion behind this movement. The people who struggle with fracking every day inspired this story."

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #87 on: February 27, 2017, 05:23:15 PM »
I had all the intention of submitting my campaign to Kindle Scout today, but I spent the day acting as a caregiver in the Emergency Room with my better half. The good news is that she's home with me and seems to have recovered from her incident.  I'll have to keep an eye on her though. Such is life!

I spent the weekend going through the manuscript one last time in Word. I use Scrivener and when I converted it to Word, that program caught some things that Scrivener missed. Time well spent. I uploaded it just now.       

With life getting in the way the past few days, I'm not as prepared as I'd like to be to go live with the Kindle Scout campaign. But I'll figure it out as I go along. Some speaking engagements are all lined up to fall within the 30 day Kindle Scout window and, if I delay any further, one will fall outside of it. In addition, I got a call from a reporter the local newspaper here who showed interest in doing an article on my effort. I'd like the Kindle Scout link to be live by the time they run any article.

Third question finished: This book is about a series, tell us about that series.

My first novel, SAVING BABE RUTH, is a prequel to THE KILLDEER CONNECTION which is the first book of the Lawyer David Thompson Series. Each book can be read as a standalone. David Thompson is a struggling lawyer just trying to do the right thing and get by while keeping his family together.

Biography finished:

Tom Swyers is often confused with Mark Twain's "Tom Sawyer." But his best friend isn't Huck and he didn't marry Becky. Based on a true story, his controversial debut novel, SAVING BABE RUTH, was the 2015 recipient of two Benjamin Franklin Book Awards for Best First Book: Fiction (1st place) and Best Popular Fiction (2nd place).  Now Swyers is back with THE KILLDEER CONNECTION, a legal thriller. When he'' not writing fiction, he's practicing law or writing decisions as a New York State judge.

Other stuff.

You can put your title all in caps if you want when you submit it to Kindle Scout. Not too many authors do it. My book is a thriller so it seems like a no-brainer to put it in all caps.

You have 50 characters to describe the link each of the maximum four social media accounts (excluding Amazon Author). Most people just use "Facebook" or "Twitter." I decided to have some fun with it and put those 50 characters to work.

I'm linking one for my book trailers on Youtube as a social media link. I uploaded it as "unlisted" on Youtube which means you can only see it if you have the link. I had to make sure the links worked the same as listed or unlisted. They are the same. I have some other unlisted videos that I'll roll out during the campaign and make them public.

If  I've learned anything this past week, it's that YouTube has recently developed a lot of marketing options that can benefit authors.     
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 05:29:24 PM by Tom Swyers »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #88 on: February 27, 2017, 05:37:28 PM »
Hi and welcome to my diary as I prepare to fail in my Kindle Scout campaign.

This is a top secret account of my Kindle Scout thoughts and planning so don't even think about bookmarking it. 8)

I'll update this post with more information about the target once I have gathered more intelligence.

Target Book Title: "The Killdeer Connection"
Scout Genres: Literature and Fiction, Mystery and Thriller (legal).
Estimated Campaign Start Date: March 1, 2017

THE KILLDEER CONNECTION

1/23 (tagline finalized: Go to bed as a lawyer -> Wake up a terrorist!

2/22 (blurb finalized): "Burned-out lawyer David Thompson is on a mission to prove his innocence. Falsely accused of murder, he must desert his family to unearth the truth from a secret society of bird-watchers. When the feds talk of adding a terrorism charge, the death penalty looms and he's on the run from both the law and the real killer. On a wild ride through the oil fields of North Dakota, Thompson's quest to save his own skin explodes into a race to save the nation from a deadly tidal wave of terror. Buckle up!"

2/27  Biography finished: "Tom Swyers is often confused with Mark Twain's "Tom Sawyer." But his best friend isn't Huck and he didn't marry Becky. Based on a true story, his controversial debut novel, SAVING BABE RUTH, was the 2015 recipient of two Benjamin Franklin Book Awards for Best First Book: Fiction (1st place) and Best Popular Fiction (2nd place).  Now Swyers is back with THE KILLDEER CONNECTION, a legal thriller. When he'' not writing fiction, he's practicing law or writing decisions as a New York State judge."

2/24 (Question 1 answered):Where did the idea for this book come from?

"Today, there are 25 million people in the USA who live in danger of being burned alive. This killer snakes across the country through small towns and major cities. It has killed dozens already. Locking your door won't save you. This is fact, not fiction. It's also the backdrop for my story."

2/25 (Question 2 answered): What is the inspiration for the story?

"At Standing Rock reservation in North Dakota, there's been a protest over the impact of fracking. Today, there are protests against fracking all around the world. I want the novel to capture the passion behind this movement. The people who struggle with fracking every day inspired this story."

2/27 (Question 3 answered) This book is about a series, tell us about that series.

"My first novel, SAVING BABE RUTH, is a prequel to THE KILLDEER CONNECTION which is the first book of the Lawyer David Thompson Series. Each book can be read as a standalone. David Thompson is a struggling lawyer just trying to do the right thing and get by while keeping his family together."

1/24 (categories finalized):

Literature & Fiction  �  Action & Adventure  �  Mystery, Thriller & Suspense  �  Mystery
Mystery, Thriller & Suspense  �  Thrillers  �  Financial
Mystery, Thriller & Suspense  �  Thrillers  �  Legal
Mystery, Thriller & Suspense  �  Thrillers  �  Terrorism

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #89 on: February 28, 2017, 04:07:21 AM »
Okay, I hit the submit button last night and got a confirmation from Kindle Scout that it has been received. See it here:

Hello Tom Swyers,
Thanks for submitting to Kindle Scout! We've received your submission for THE KILLDEER CONNECTION.
Here's what happens next:
   Eligibility & Content Review
You'll hear from us in 1-2 business days (longer if we have a ton of submissions). Once your submission is approved for launch, we'll tell you the exact launch date and provide the URL for your Kindle Scout campaign. What are we reviewing for? If you haven't already, check out the Kindle Scout Eligibility & Content Guidelines.
   Get Ready
Now is the perfect time to plan how you're going to let your fans and network know that you are putting your book up for a Kindle Press publishing contract. Facebook fans, Twitter followers, and email lists you have accumulated over the years are great places to start.
   Where Is My Submission?
You can view your submission by visiting Your Campaigns page. We don't currently have a way for you to edit completed submissions (we are working on it!). If there is something you need to change, let us know and we'd be happy to help.
Questions? Check out our FAQs or Contact Us.
Thank you,
The Kindle Scout Team
________________________________________
This email was sent from a notification-only address that cannot accept incoming email.
Please do not reply to this message.
Home | FAQs | Contact Us | Go Scout 

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #90 on: February 28, 2017, 01:11:02 PM »
Thirteen hours later, I got official approval for THE KILLDEER CONNECTION campaign.

The campaign goes live March 2 (Thursday) at midnight EDT.

I found issues with my campaign page and reported them. So, make sure to chick your preview link and inspect your submission closely!   

Here's the email.

Approved!

Hello Tom Swyers,
Your Kindle Scout submission has been approved for launch! Your campaign for THE KILLDEER CONNECTION will launch on March 2, 2017 12:00 AM EST and last for 30 days.
Here's what happens next:
   Preview
Here is a preview link to your Kindle Scout campaign page. (It is only visible to you.) This is exactly what your readers will see when your campaign launches. If you see any typos, formatting issues, or other critical errors, please contact us as soon as possible. Please note that if your book is selected for publication through Kindle Press, you'll have an opportunity to make changes to your manuscript, cover image, and book details before your book becomes available for sale on Amazon.
   Get Ready
This will be the URL for your Kindle Scout campaign once it launches:
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX----- Deleted-------- XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
It won't work until your campaign launches; however, you can use it to draft your emails and social media campaigns so they are ready to go on launch day.
   Launch!
Your Kindle Scout campaign for THE KILLDEER CONNECTION will launch on March 2, 2017 12:00 AM EST and end on April 1, 2017 12:00 AM EDT!
Questions? Check out our FAQs or Contact Us.

Preview your campaign

Thank you,
The Kindle Scout Team
________________________________________
This email was sent from a notification-only address that cannot accept incoming email.

Offline Joynell Schultz

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #91 on: February 28, 2017, 01:54:10 PM »
Congrats! I can't wait to see your book among the rest of us on Kindle Scout. Plus I never did see the final cover yet. :-) I've been anxiously waiting for it.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #92 on: February 28, 2017, 03:54:13 PM »
Hi Joynell,

Thank you for your support throughout!

Yes, my first promotion is to reveal the cover via Youtube video where you will see 60 covers in 60 seconds with the winner somewhere in it. 

I'll post it here and on the Kindle Scout thread. I'm sending it to my email subscribers and posting it on social media and through co-promote. The neat thing is that if it all works right, there should be a link in the video that if you click it will take you directly to the Kindle Scout page. Not only does it work on YouTube, it should work here too and on KBoards and social media sites where it is embedded. The YouTube video is easy to tweet and post on facebook.  I've never seen this done before.

I'm doing some first-time stuff in this campaign. I'm curious to see what works and what fails due to technical difficulties.     :)


Offline AlexaKang

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #93 on: February 28, 2017, 04:59:28 PM »
Tom, maybe I missed it but how did you use your book trailer to spread the word?

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #94 on: February 28, 2017, 05:57:25 PM »
Akexa,

Help me out because I'm not sure what you mean.

My campaign hasn't begun yet.

The cover reveal video will roll out first when the campaign begins.

Next, I'll have two book trailer videos that will roll out to "spread the word."

Is that what you mean?

Offline AlexaKang

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #95 on: February 28, 2017, 06:57:49 PM »
Akexa,

Help me out because I'm not sure what you mean.

My campaign hasn't begun yet.

The cover reveal video will roll out first when the campaign begins.

Next, I'll have two book trailer videos that will roll out to "spread the word."

Is that what you mean?

HI Tom,

Sorry I wasn't clear. Yes that's what I meant. How do you plan to use your book trailer videos? Or maybe you haven't gotten to planning that yet?

I'm likely going to submit my next book to KS, so I'm reading your thread with great interest. I doubt I can do everything you've done but it's been very interesting seeing how you'd set it up. Thanks for sharing!

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #96 on: February 28, 2017, 09:03:22 PM »
Congrats, Tom! Best wishes on your campaign.

Jaxon Reed | Main Site | Blog

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #97 on: March 01, 2017, 04:47:23 AM »
HI Tom,

Sorry I wasn't clear. Yes that's what I meant. How do you plan to use your book trailer videos? Or maybe you haven't gotten to planning that yet?

I'm likely going to submit my next book to KS, so I'm reading your thread with great interest. I doubt I can do everything you've done but it's been very interesting seeing how you'd set it up. Thanks for sharing!

Hi Alexa,

I have some solid video ideas but am constantly tweaking now and dealing with tech. issues.

I guess I'll have to post what I've done video wise after I've done it.

Tomorrow's video is ready and I'll post it here when after my campaign goes live.
 
Tom

 

   

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #98 on: March 01, 2017, 04:48:03 AM »
Congrats, Tom! Best wishes on your campaign.

Thank you, sir!

Appreciate your support.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #99 on: March 01, 2017, 03:52:47 PM »
Getting ready to go live tonight at midnight.

Here's the big plan in a nutshell: start at home and then venture out. The old-fashioned social network takes some time to run smoothly as a word-of-mouth machine so I want to jumpstart that engine early in the campaign to grow during the course of the 30 days.   

I've drafted a note to my mailing list (200) and beta readers (35) that will go out tomorrow morning with the cover reveal video and the Kindle Scout campaign link. I want to make sure the campaign is live before sending it out.

I'm sending individual emails to close family and friends that are forwardable about the campaign.

I'll wait until I make the "hot and trending" at some point (hopefully)  before notifying friends from my past who remember me as a  _______ (fill in the blank) instead of an author. That's my bandwagon group.

I have an interview with a newspaper reporter tomorrow. Target date for that article is next Thursday--early on in the campaign. They have an on-line presence so I'll post that on various local websites with a link either in the article or along with it.

I plan to take my flyers with me and post them all over the place (libraries, town hall, the banks, the supermarket-- anyplace I know that has a public bulletin board) on the way back home from the interview. I want to get those out first because they have 30 days staying power on a bulletin board if dated.

Today I got my haircut (gotta look presentable in public after living in an author rabbit hole for so long)  so I dropped off my flyer (it's a tearaway) with the barber. I even gave him his own URL in the name of his business and also printed the QR code on it. He's excited. In case you don't recall, his shop is mentioned in the book. I'll hit the beauty parlor tomorrow where my wife goes. His shop is also in the book and will get his own URL as well.   

I've got a public speaking engagement next Monday night. I'll give out sheets with my book information on it after my talk and ask them to spread the word.

I'm booked also in the third week in March. Read about it here: http://hvwg.org/hvwg-hosts-community-of-writers-reading-on-march-26/

Finally, I plan to post my cover reveal video to social media and writing groups. I plan to co-promote it as well. I'll do that first thing tomorrow.

I'll see how much time is left in the day before taking anything else on. 
     
« Last Edit: March 01, 2017, 04:43:28 PM by Tom Swyers »