I admit it. I’ve done everything wrong when it comes to marketing. After releasing my fist book, Apocalipstick, I thought it would sell itself. I had labored long and hard to complete it. Sleepless nights and weeks of revision and editing. Should it not just sell itself? Well, it did not, and I had to learn about marketing. I made a few mistakes along the way (okay many mistakes), but now with my second book, Remote, I have a few helpful suggestions.
Build a Community
It was a beautiful day in April. Blue sky and eighty degrees. Unusual weather for so early in the year. I was stuck inside a library with eleven other authors. Because of the wonderful weather outside, no one was coming inside to look, let alone buy books. Instead, the authors mingled and learned about each other. That day, I gathered information on local writing groups, writing associations, marketing tips, and upcoming events that I never knew existed. While I didn’t sell many books, I walked away with a friends and authors willing to provide support and help me succeed.
Be Prepared for Anything
My first local arts festival could have been a disaster. Who knew you were responsible for tables and chairs? My husband and I arrived, my books in hand but with nothing else. The people in the grass next to us, who had obviously been in the business for years and had already set up tent, tables, and display, couldn’t hide their smiles as they explained we were only given the spot. We needed to supply everything else. Luckily, the arts festival was in my hometown and my husband and I were able to run home to grab the needed items and set up in time for the opening of the event. But that day, I learned an important lesson. Expect the unexpected. Something is bound to go wrong.
Have a Plan
Now that I have been to comic conventions, libraries, books shows and craft shows, I have learned the value of an organized plan. My books and corresponding paraphernalia reside in artfully arranged boxes, easy to carry and ready to go. I have gifts for children -- stickers for the toddlers and zombie pencils and brain erasers for the older children. I have handouts and bookmarks for adults as I attempt to draw them in by standing in front of my booth or table. While I’m naturally shy and promoting my book has been tough, having an established plan of action makes the day much more enjoyable.
Genre: Science Fiction, romance
Publisher: Etopia Press
Number of pages: 207
Word Count: 71,000
When technology fulfills every dream, reality becomes a nightmare.
Below the streets of New State, the undergrounders fight to remain free of the technological control of the world above. Every night, Yara risks her life fighting New State’s deadliest weapons, the drones. Half human and half machine, their living half tortured until everything human is gone, the drones have only one objective. Kill. And they do it with exacting precision.
Yara is good at her job and committed to her raids on New State. Until one of those raids brings her face-to-face with Joshua, a New State citizen who doesn’t quite fit her preconceived expectations. After a couple of awkward encounters, he shows her the meaning of hooking up—a computer simulation that allows people to live out their fantasies—without the complication of emotional entanglements or physical reality. But what Yara feels for Joshua is very real. And it’s punishable by law.
As she and Joshua grow closer, she convinces him to leave New State for her underground cause. But as the unrest between New State and the underground escalates, and the drones move in to destroy her world, nothing goes as planned. Families are arrested, loyalties are strained, and Yara’s forced to choose between her people and her feelings. The wrong choice could mean the end of her people, and reality could slip away—forever...
“Hi,” he called out.
Yara’s heart hammered, and adrenaline coursed through her limbs. She turned to run.
“Wait,” the stranger whispered. “I won’t turn you in. I’m out here too.” He obviously didn’t realize that Yara was a rebel. He might not know it yet, but he would soon. Still, he didn’t sound dangerous. Maybe Yara could take care of him. She had never had to kill anyone totally human, but she had trained to do so. At this point, she didn’t think she would need to. The skinny boy didn’t look like a real threat, either.
She turned back toward him and attempted what she hoped was a look of death and destruction.
Instead of being scared, he smiled at her and brushed the hair out of his eyes. Even in the shadowy street, Yara could see the color was a beautiful emerald green. She had a hard time looking away, until his voice jarred her back to reality.
“I’m Joshua15111,” he said robotically. “What are you doing out here?”
“I could ask you the same thing.”
“Enjoying the night sky,” he replied, each word clipped and succinct. Unable to make prolonged eye contact, he looked toward the stars.
“Aren’t you supposed to be hooked up to an alternate universe, enjoying battle, boobs, or whatever perverted fantasy you want to conquer tonight?” Yara asked, and then instantly regretted her words.
“Hey, it’s not like that. You know how it is.” For the first time, his voice took on a more humanistic quality. He sounded peeved.
She grunted in response. She didn’t know anything of the sort.
Joshua15111 looked at her briefly, quizzically. “Wait, do you know that? Are you one of them? The rebels?”
Oh no. “What rebels?”
“Are you for real? Everyone knows about the rebels. You must be one. Are you a rebel? That’s so cool.”
Me and my big mouth. Fear finally overtook her. Vague ideas about running away from or fighting the stranger flitted by, but Yara’s feet felt like concrete blocks. She wasn’t even sure she’d be able to form a coherent sentence if he asked her something about the underground.
About the Author:
Lisa Acerbo is a high school teacher and holds an EdD in Educational Leadership. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, daughters, three cats, and horse. She is the author of Apocalipstick and has contributed to local newspapers, news and travel blogs including The Patch and Hollywood Scriptwriter.