Saturday, July 29, 2006

The Romance Writer's Life - Installment 7 The Contract

Yay! I received THE CONTRACT, a binding agreement, a proof that I am an author!! My dream come true!!!

I danced through the next few days with a huge smile. All my hours at the computer had paid off--I can now tell people that I do have a book published. My first experience was stopping into a local restaurant late at night after visiting a family member at the hospital. We were the only patrons and the waitress was cute and friendly. My husband, God love him, doesn't know a stranger. He can talk to anyone (and usually does) . . . nonstop. I get tired just listening to him. He's never at a loss for words. I've heard him tell a perfect stranger in less than two minutes: he was born in Michigan, but is now a Buckeye, that he is retired, that he once owned a meat shop but sold it and is now working part-time for the man who bought it, that he has a pond in the backyard he dug and cemented himself, a statue of a boy fishing sitting on a bridge over the pond that his wife and daughter painted, how many fish are in the pond, that he has replaced most of his rose bushes with knock-out roses because they bloom all the time if you care for them properly, that he listens to Denny McKeun on the radio to learn how to care for them . . . (gasp) Whew! I'm making myself tired, but I think you get the gist.

Anyway, we were leaving the booth to pay for our dinner when he was in the middle of spilling all the information he could to the waitress and he said "My wife is an author." The waitress looked at me with awe. Wow, she was in the presence of a real-life writer. (At this point, I could have kissed my talkative soul-mate!) I pulled out one of my new business cards, turned it over and wrote the names of the three books I had stories published in, and listed the title of my "upcoming" novel. She asked if she could have my autograph when the book came out. I smiled and said of course I'd autograph a copy of the book if she bought one. (Ah, see, publicity.)

And that's the next step for me as a writer. I have the contract. My book will be published, but how do I promote it? It's not quite like "Field of Dreams." One cannot say, "write it and they will buy."

What will entice readers to purchase my book? How does one advertise and reach a multitude of people? I'm not a good salesperson, which is why my day job doesn't require that. But now I've chosen to be a writer, and as such, must learn to be a salesperson. **sigh**


Marty said...

I'm right there with you...I've heard writers say that this promotional intersection is where writing becomes a j-o-b. I hope not. I hope we can keep the writing for f-u-n and have promotion be the 'work'. Good luck!

Lee Morrison said...

Your hubby sounds a bit like mine. He can talk to anyone, and usually does, lol. I love it because I can always rely on him to pick up the slack for me.

I'm still learning marketing tools too. Contests seem to be popular, the business cards you mentioned are a great idea, and the editors at WRP have been great about providing helpful hints as well if you haven't already found them in the author threads.

If I hear of something new, I'll pass it on to you. Until then...good luck with the writing and marketing both!


Carol Ann Erhardt said...

Actually, I'm finding marketing to be fun so far! I'm finding some wonderful writer blogs and enjoying some great reads along the way.