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I spend most of my time daydreaming and creating otherworldly tales steeped in myth, magic, and romance. All of my heroes have long hair, and my heroines are strong-willed. Prior to being a writer, I played bass guitar in an all-girl hard rock/metal band in southern California. When I'm not writing, editing, or reading, I enjoy practicing target archery.
 

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Brenda Williamson's Romance Party Yahoo Group

A writer's work does not end when the book is completed. It is a continuous cycle of promotion after the book is released. Setting up reviews, interviews, author parties and chats are a constant part of my time. Doing author parties and chats are new territory for me and I was lucky to have Brenda Williamson's expert advice on how to prepare for a party or a chat. Brenda is the talented author of numerous erotic romances. I will share some of her advice with the newbies out there.

When preparing for an author party or chat, it is best to have an itinerary word doc file ready so you can post everything quickly. Some emails do not convert the word doc correctly so you should turn off the smart tags. To do this go to Tools>Auto Correct Options>Auto Format (uncheck straight quotes with smart quotes).

If you are hosting a four hour party, then posting every 15 minutes is good, but if you are hosting an all-day party, you may want to spread the posting out to 30 minutes apart. Make a schedule according to what you want to accomplish within the time period.

Excerpts should be short so people can read them fast. People love contests so have at least one contest where you give something away. I gave away gift certificates to fictionwise and ebookwise. This is easier because you don't have to ship anything. It might be good to give away items that relate to your book rather than the book itself so that people will buy your book. But it is up to you. I also gave away a couple of signed copies of my book. To make the contest open to everyone (even the people who may come to the party late), it might be better to announce the winners the next day. I had four contests. To make it easier to organize the entries, I created four different folders in my mailbox to move the contest emails from my in box.

Weekdays are usually better because most people spend time with their families on the weekend. Evenings may be better because most people are home and at their computer in the evening. Either way, people will probably see your posts even if they see them later or the next day.

The itinerary helps to keep you posting in the event that people do not show up. Most people lurk, but will still read the excerpts and hopefully buy a book. Just keep on posting. Any promotion you do is a step toward selling more books.

Happy writing and promoting!
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