Janey Bennett, author of Pale Surface of Things, was BPNW’s guest speaker on November 20. Following are some of Janey’s suggestions from her talk on promoting fiction:
Awards – Pale Surface has seven of them. It’s one of the miracles of this book’s promotion. We found the competitions mostly through ads on www.shelfawareness.com, which I recommend reading daily. It’s a great source of ideas.
I also received one fellowship and two awards before publication, for the manuscript of Pale Surface, from sites I found in Poets and Writers Magazine. Those start the process of moving the air molecules around your title and name.
Press Release – When Pale Surface got the seventh award, we sent out a press release on www.PRWeb.com and it’s still (5 months later) drawing hits to our website, www.palesurfaceofthings.com. I would only send a press release when I had news, like seven awards, because puff press releases annoy people. Use press releases wisely.
Websites – My website, http://www.palesurfaceofthings.com has grown into a collection of information, an interview, a press area, reviews, reader comments, a slide show of my research photos of Crete, a lot of things connected to the book. But for interviews, we found it a good idea to set up a second website at www.janeybennett.com which offers information on my other writing (including a sample), and some mention of my other endeavors and my background. The two sites are linked.
Other internet ideas keep coming to me, and will come to you. Some are great, and sometimes I just roll my eyes and go back to work on the next novel. It’s a balancing act, how much you want to do. This is what I have done. I’m sure I’m forgetting some things, but here we are. The book is alive and kicking, and life is lovely.