Release week is over, FLYAWAY has made it’s way into the world, and I’m still alive to tell you about it. I’d seen so many author friends dissolve into bundles of stress as their books launched, and I didn’t want that to happen to me. Now, I’m not saying that dealing with the daily bursting email inbox and the endless to-do lists was a walk in the park, but I do think I came up with a few strategies to help minimize the stress.
1. Organize. As soon as I signed my contract, I bought myself a binder and dedicated it to book promotion. I divided it into sections labeled “Launch Party,” “Events,” “Swag,” “Blog Tour,” and so on. Then any notes, contact numbers, URLs or email addresses I wanted to keep track of went in the binder. As release time got closer, these notes included deadlines for things such as conference proposals and blog tour posts.
2. Prioritize. When there are tons of demands coming at you at once, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s most important. So each week, I created a to-do list which prioritized the most important tasks. Blog post due Monday morning? That went to the top of the list. Organizing an author event for next spring? That went closer to the bottom. This master weekly list became the basis for my daily to-do list. I found that it was important to stay flexible and be open to shifting items around as new opportunities came up.
3. Focus. Once I determined which task on my list was most urgent to tackle, I went into high-focus mode. I tried to give my full attention to the task at hand and not get distracted by fretting over the things I wasn’t doing.
4. Delegate. As in, “Could you please run these giveaway prizes to the post office for me, honey?”
5. Celebrate. I found that the biggest challenge was to actually enjoy my launch time – and I know from talking to other authors that this is common. Here you are, accomplishing a major life goal, and all you can think about is whether you should have gone with the larger size bookmark or spent more money on your trailer. Or worse, you constantly compare the buzz your book is getting to the publicity and reviews being garnered by other authors. Perhaps the most important thing you can to do make sure you survive your book release is to pour yourself a glass of wine, pat yourself on the back, and say, “I did it! I’m the author of a published book!”
For some practical book promotion ideas, check out Lisa Schroeder’s book promotion timeline for YA and MG authors and Saundra Mitchell’s Bossy Self-Marketing Timeline.
How did you manage to survive your book release?