Wednesday, August 30, 2006

My Eureka Moment

At 5.45am this morning I woke up with a fully-fledged Marketing Plan rattling around my brain.
Somewhat belatedly I realised that by putting my novel, A Half Life of One, on the web I have in effect created a unique identity for it, a literary history, a pedigree that allows me to differentiate it from virtually all the other mss that deluge agents on a daily basis.

Think about it. Most unsolicited submissions have no pedigree. If you're an unpublished novelist the best you can do is cite some short stories you have published in obscure literary magazines. Maybe you once published a poem in the school magazine.

But my book has form. My book has already been read by people all over the world. In other words it's been extensively test marketed. I have the statistics to prove it. For example, I know that of everyone who has started the book, 95% have finished it. And that's in its crude electronic form, which we all know is hell to read.

And what do readers think about the book? Well, on my query letter I can quote the following opinions:

"The book is good. Very good."
"Great. Reminded me of 'Bonfire of the Vanities'."
"This is a great read."
"There's real power in your story."
"Excellent. Got more?"
"I'm hooked."
etc etc.

What agent could resist such a sure-fire proposal? Okay, I'm hyping the book but isn't that what it's all about these days? I'm selling a product, which is part of the authoring process, one I've been slow to learn.

So, here's the new deal. While I'm investigating the mechanics of self-publishing I've decided I'll send the book out to one more agent. Suitably packaged with positive feedback from my blogging experience. I'll let you know how I get on.

Now, back to bed while I catch up on some of that beauty sleep I've been missing.


  1. Eureka!!!!

    Make yourself beautiful Pund and get it out there!

  2. You're right, it does have a history! And you can tell them this: I'll buy one! And I'll sell one for you, too. So there's two sure-fire sales.

  3. Minx, you've seen my photo - I am beautiful already.

    Daddy, you are a great comfort to me. So much so I'll probably give you a copy for nothing.

  4. Apologies, Pundy my friend, of course you are!

    You know that you did this blogging thing for a reason - and there it is. Things are not always as they seem, or what you thought they were in the beginning.

    I think the lesson is, not to put all your eggs in one basket, spread yourself around and keep an open mind.

    And if Daddy says he'll sell two then I'll top him and buy three, so there!

  5. An excellent idea! Minx is right (of course)... Such an obvious good use to put all this to.

  6. I am reviewing a book at the moment, and during the course of writing the review went to the author's website. She's posted a comment about her new novel with links to first reactions to it. I went to the link and there was one comment-- from a bookseller. Underneath it said "more to come".

    This is a best selling novelist.

    So you are doing brill by comparison, Pundy!

  7. Blogging has got to be a smart marketing move for anyone self-publishing and even for those going the traditional route. I know of numerous US authors who have set up "house" at myspace - just so they can punt their work.
    Smart move.
    See Minx, now you know why everyone is suffering from blogaholicism - we're all just wannabe marketers - except me, who was one in a previous life :-)

  8. Hi there Bill. Glad it's all flowing nicely. Don't forget, should you actually pursue self-pimping, to use bookcrossing. That way you're sure to create some sort of intrigue - particularly if you sign them and make yourself sound like some wizened mage in the message.