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Monday, 9 December 2013

The *Plan*

My debut novel, Shift Happens, is due out sometime in the Spring of 2014. Probably April-ish. I don't have a set release date still, but I want to be as successful as possible. My publisher recommends a long list of things I can do to help promote my book and me as an author.

These are the ones I have already completed:
  1. Website
  2. Blog (duh!)
  3. Use taglines on all blog posts (check)
  4. Facebook (
  5. Twitter (@JC_McKenzie)
  6. Post tweets automatically to Facebook (check) 
  7. Make a newsletter (I use Mailchimp, and I've tested it. First one due out Dec 15th)

And then there's the one's I haven't completed:
  1. Post tweets automatically to your website (I'm not sure about this. Seems overkill?)
  2. Get people to sign up for your newsletter (how?!?)
  3. Create an online press kit (seems like I need a lot of the other things on this list first)
  4. Make a video book trailer (I covered my current success at this here)
  5. Start a monthly contest on your website (Rafflecopter here I come!)
  6. Send newsletter monthly (I need more than my mom to send it to first. Hi mom! Love you)
  7. Join your publisher's monthly contest if they have one (Signed up for December)
  8. Plan your blog tour (I'd rather start closer to the release date...which I need to know)
  9. Plan your release party (see above note)
  10. Plan your advertising budget (How do I do this if I don't know what to expect to make??)
  11. Submit to review sites (need to have something to submit. Not done editing yet)
  12. Ask authors for an endorsement (see above note)
  13. Sign up for live interviews (eeeeeeek!)
  14. Create a skype account and post to offer teleconference with book clubs (eeeeeek!)

I've also added:
  1. Sign up for Goodreads (
  2. Once book is released, request Goodreads author page. (I can do this!)
  3. Once book is released, request Amazon author page. (I can do this!)
I've completed 8 of the 24 recommendations. Literally 1/3 of the way complete. The next thing I'd like to check off is the monthly contest. With the winter holidays looming and 3-5 months before the release of my first book, I think starting now is a good time, but it leaves me with a big question. What do I give away?!?

I'd like to give away my book, but without an exact release date, I feel it won't make a good prize until maybe a month away from the release. Maybe a gift certificate? But for how much and for where?

What are your thoughts?