Saturday, February 28, 2009

Book Launch


It's getting close to time for my book launch for No Sanctuary. I'm nervous.

I picked up a party tray last night with lunch meats and cheeses. I have a great smoked salmon my friend from Alaska sent me, crackers, and all sorts of interesting coffees to serve. On our way we'll stop at Coffee Etc. and pick up the cookies I ordered. (I'm giving them an autographed copy of the book.)

I have black tablecloths, yellow cups, napkins and plates and the crime scene tape. I printed out Wanted Posters which I'm hanging on the wall along with a big poster of No Sanctuary.(Using that stick stuff that peels right off so I don't harm the walls--don't want my church members to get made at me.) I've got signs that say, Interrogation, Holding Cell, etc. I'm putting an evidence bag on the refreshment table.

Of course I also have my books. I'm going to have a drawing for a lunch for two with me at Coffee Etc. (Done that a couple of times before and it's fun for the winner and me). My guest book will be out and I'll ask anyone who hasn't before to sign and put in his email address.

My husband is going--he'll put up the table and chairs and haul everything inside for me. (He's wonderful about this stuff.) Also my daughter-in-law is going to take photos with her new camera and my grand-daughter is coming for awhile. She's helped with the money part for me before. With all my helpers at least I won't be lonesome if no one shows up. Can you tell I'm nervous?

Oh, and I'm wearing a great vest over my regular clothes that my husband won at a Public Safety Writers Conference--the material has all kinds of appropriate sayings on it, like Innocent, Crime Stopper, Protect and Serve, The Boys in Blue--you get the idea.

I've done everything I know to do to publicize this: poster at Coffee Etc., poster at the post office, two notices in the local paper, two in the larger newspaper, mailed written and email invitations, put notices online to local groups, and announced it in church last Sunday since it's going to be there in the Fellowship Hall.

In two and a half hours I'll know if any of it did any good. If worse comes to worse, my family will have lots of goodies to eat and drink.

Marilyn
aka F. M. Meredith

Friday, February 27, 2009

Websites

I have not yet added anyone's websites to my Gumbo Justice one, but anyone who wants me to post a link, I have a category for it. Please e-mail me at hhcas@cox.net or writerchick@cox.net with the name of the website, or websites as the case may be, and I will e-mail you mine to add to yours. It seems simpler to just copy your address from my email and put it on the website, and then hit reply with my own for you. I hope no one thinks I'm lazy, but keeping up with the technology gets crazy.

Also, I posted the first chapter of Gumbo Justice if anyone is interested. My website, www.gumbojustice.net, is really still an infant, but every monkey thinks its chimp is cute, so I'm proud of it just the same.

I also have reserved Hollicastillo.com, but have not done anything with it yet, which will be my next project. I'll let everyone know when it is up.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Same Gripe...Different Day

Sigh. More celebrity book deals. Check it out.

Condi Rice...a three book deal worth $2.5 million.

Diane Keaton...$2-plus million

But here's the killer...Kathy Griffin, $2 million.

Kathy Griffin?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A Newsletter to Inspire Imagination

Just finished reading the new Colophon and, as usual I've come away feeling inspired!
I love the concept of branding and have seen it work for so many authors. Janet Evanovich is an author who comes to mind when I think of branding. You have to see only the title or the cover of a book to know it was written by Janet.

Today, I put up a quote in my art classroom that I believe is especially appropriate for writers. "Imagination is more important than knowledge." Albert Einstein wrote that a few years ago.

If you have not already created your "branding," think about it now and use your imagination. Thank you, Billie, for pushing us with your brand of inspiration!

Trepidation About Book Reviews



One of the most difficult things about being an author is waiting to read the reviews. The first one I received for No Sanctuary was posted on a list with over 3000 mystery lovers. Unfortunately, the reviewer criticized it because in her opinion it was too mild--bedroom door shut, no graphic violence or murder scenes. In the end though, she said she liked it.

The second one I've posted here because it is positive and tells more about the book.

"A car accident or a murder? That is the question Officer Stacey Wilbur faces when she find a car smashed into a tree while working the night shift for the Rocky Bluffs Police Department. Stacey immediately phones Detective Doug Milligan who responds to the scene. It doesn’t take long to figure out that the victim had been shot in the head.

The victim is identified as Mallory Cookmeyer, wife of a prominent local minister. Rev. Paul Cookmeyer is shocked to hear of his wife’s death but can offer no suggestions as to who might want her dead. As Doug and Stacey and the other detectives work the case they find that there are a number of suspects including Paul Cookmeyer, his secretary, Ms Danfelt, the choir director, a minister of another church as well as that minister’s wife. When it is revealed that Mallory was pregnant, the case becomes even more complicated.

Stacey and Doug work together but are also romantically involved. Their relationship has not progressed rapidly since Stacey has a young son to rush home too and since they both work different shifts, their hours make dating difficult.

No Sanctuary is a good mystery with a bit of a surprise ending. Peeks into the lives of some of the other officers in the department make for interesting reading. Stacey leaves the investigation for a brief stint as an undercover officer, which adds another dimension to the story.


REVIEWED BY PATRICIA REID, Best Sellers World

I've sent out lots of review copies so I'm still in a state of trepidation and will be for awhile.

Marilyn

Monday, February 23, 2009

The New Colophon

What a great newsletter from our publisher!

Wow! I've already asked my web maven to put all those links on my website, I hope the rest of you are doing the same. (Well, not asking my web maven to do it--but if you do your own website, doing it or having the person up updates your website do it for you.)

There are about three other Marilyn Merediths with websites, that's why I used Fictionforyou.com. I've had a website for years and the first person who did it for me came up with that name. I'll have to see if F. M. Meredith is available.

There is so much promotion to do--and believe me it's way easier than it used to be.

I've had several publishers and I've never ever had one before who did so much for their authors--or came up with ideas for their authors to do.

At the moment I'm swamped as I'm getting ready for another writing conference, Epicon. At this conference I'm giving a presentation on Writing a Mystery series and I'm on two panels for young writers. I also get to be a presenter for the best Mystery award. This conference's awards ceremony is done much like the Academy Awards and everyone dresses up.

I'll certainly be handing out my cards with the No Sanctuary book cover on the front and my website, Oak Tree Press's web address and my email address on the back.

I vowed to do a new blog everyday for the month of February and I've done it so far--but I'll be glad when February is over. I try to Twitter two or three times a day.

Much of this promotion will probably slow down while I'm at the conference though I do have a new mini-laptop with wifi capabilities.

Anyway, I once more want to emphasize the fact that we are so lucky to have the publisher we do--I've had some great publishers, but this is the first one I've had who works so hard for her authors.

Thank you, Billie,

Marilyn
aka F.M. Meredith

Sunday, February 22, 2009

OTP's 2009 List



We are two-for-two in 2009! Last month, Marilyn Meredith's No Sanctuary came out and joined the other Rocky Bluff P.D. novels. As you may recall from her recent posts, Marilyn is busily preparing for the launch party...jeez, I wish I were attending!

Last week, The Pot Thief Who Studied Pythagoras hit the scene. The Pot Thief was the 2007 Dark Oak Mystery Contest winner...and how. This mystery, set in old Albuqerque, is sly and funny, the plot complications fresh and new, and viewpoint character Hubert Schuze puts a totally new spin on moral relativism. Plus, in a first for OTP, the cover blurb was penned by Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico!

We are right around the corner from sending Sunny Frazier's Where Angels Fear to the printer. This novel is a followup to Sunny's popular debut novel, Fools Rush In In Sunny's Christy Bristol Astrology Mystery series, she marries up the unlikely combination of law enforcement and astrology and gives us a look at crime in California's Central Valley.

Later in the spring, we are going practical. We have Richard Mundy's Car Repair: The Customer's Crash Course a how-to manual guiding us through the sometimes painful process of auto repairs.

Following that will be Barry Thomsen's The Jelly Bean Principle Subtitled "100 ways to stand out from your competitors," we think this is definitely a book for our troubled economic times when gaining or sustaining customers is priority one. Barry issues a monthly newsletter pointed to small business called IDEALETTER and has a web site to go with it at IDEALETTER

For June, we have Monti's STRANGER IN MY HEART, Holli's GUMBO JUSTICE (her site is in progress, but Zowie...is it good looking! Check it out!) We may even have the 2008 Dark Oak contest winner, INFATUATION by Wendy Sinicki. The push here is that the PSWA conference in Las Vegas is set for June 18-21, and that seems a great spot for us all to get together and launch some books!

In Franklin's House, the hauntingly beautiful story that took first prize in the 2008 Timeless Love contest and Days On the Beach, which got the grand prize in the 2007 Cop Tales contest will finish off the summer. Later, Patricia Sheehy's A Thousand Whispers which continues the lives and characters from 2007's Field of Destiny is due.

So, I'll be busy with the production work on these, and you never know when another "must do" project will appear. That's ANOTHER good reason why I am delighted that we have our Book Promo Department up and rolling. Sunny tells me that she's in contract with quite a few OTP authors, finding ways to attract more attention to their books. But considering how busy she's gonna get, if you haven't been touch, don't wait!

You have three options for contact: post here on OTPBLOG, email BOOKPROMODEPT or surf over to the Maven's page on the OTP website There's a link right in the middle that will take you there.

--Billie

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Marilyn Meredith’s buying crime tape for her book launch is the latest idea I plan to copy if I can find a place to buy some. I’m putting together an eight-state book signing tour for this summer (Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming – some of the places I’ve lived that are more or less contiguous; the Northeast will be for another time). After reading about the Public Safety Writers Conference and the PSWA, maybe I’ll add Nevada and California and make it an even ten states while enjoying two conferences. On the topic of promoting our work, Mary Montague Sikes is still the only OTP writer who has responded to my suggestion that we place links on each other’s websites. All you have to do is send me an email (j.orenduff@mchsi.com), and I’ll add a link to your site on my Pot Thief site.

Two Topics/PSWA Conference and Book Launch

For those of you who are writing mysteries or anything concerning public safety (characters who are ambulance drivers, fire firefighters, paramedics, private eyes, etc.) do consider coming to the Public Safety Writers Conference in June. http://www.publicsafetywriter.com June 18-21.

We have some great conference speakers, award winning mystery writer Betty Webb, two forensic experts, Joyce Spizer Foy, mystery writer, screenwriter, and promotion guru, our own Billie Johnson, and many more. Any one who wants to be on a panel will be (see the Public Safety Writer Newsletter (also on the website) to read how to be a panelist. You can have your books on sale: the organization keeps only 10%.

What a wonderful way to learn more about your craft, get new ideas, meet new people, network with other Oak Tree Press authors and the publisher (I know of at least three OTP authors who have signed up already), have a great time--and take the whole thing off your income tax! What could be better?

Plans for my book launch for No Sanctuary are moving right along. I've bought crime scene tape, black tableclothes, yellow napkins, plates and cups, and plan to hang up appropriate signs you might find in a police station. Of course I've ordered wonderful cookies from my favorite coffee place, and I'll be serving other goodies. Anyone who might be near Springville CA, this is going on at the Springville Baptist Church, Bogart Dr. off Highway 190, at the top of the hill (1 mile south of the town), Saturday, February 28 from 11-4.

I have written invitations ready to go in the mail, have put flyers up in town, will send email invites out next week, and it's been in the local paper and I've sent a notice to the larger paper.

Now all I can do is hope for the best.

Hope to see some of you at the PSWA conference!

Marilyn
http://fictionforyou.com

Monday, February 16, 2009

HOW BIG IS YOUR BOX?

Sunny here.

All this talk about diminishing venues to speak and sign, difficulty getting book sales and name recognition makes me wonder--how far out of the box are you willing to think?

I live in a small town, pop. 23,000 (Lemoore). Ten miles away is a larger town (Hanford). Forty miles away is the Big City (Fresno).

I lived in the Big City over 25 years and was never able to get a signing or even a book launch. The local newspaper ignores local authors in favor of canned wire reviews of authors who would never set foot in this part of California. What good was that doing me?

When I moved back to my hometown, I was asked to write a monthly column on writing in the weekly newspaper. They practically created an entertainment section just for me. I sought to fill it with other book news and author interviews. I did this without pay. I became known as "the local mystery writer." Nice.

The Hanford library read one of my columns and asked me to do an event. It was such a great experience, I asked if I could help with the author program and filled the calendar with local authors all the way to 2011. I also write all the newspaper articles and contact the media. Free of charge.

An even smaller town, Chowchilla, put on a Local Authors Event. It cost nothing, but was set in a small room, little media notification and not well attended. I used the event to grab business cards from every author. Why couldn't I do a similar event in Hanford?

I asked the same question of my library. I was offered free use of the Veterans Building, picked a date, and put out a call for authors. Over 23 have responded so far. The event will be free to the public, widely publicized and the local ice cream parlor (best ice cream in the world, we are a dairy region) may be giving us coupons to go with book sales.

Okay, the point of my blog: instead of wondering where all the good sales venues are, why not create them? Not just for yourself, but for all the authors in your area. Why not just do what I did--ask. Sometimes it just takes one person to get the ball rolling.

Keep in mind, I did this with no pay. Yes, it took time from my life and writing. However, it has resulted in a higher profile in my region and kept my name out there to the public. I've also become the de facto hub of a writers' consortium since I have all the contacts. You need a speaker? Call me.

There are a few things you must be willing to do, but then, you should be doing them already. I became familiar with the movers and shakers in my small towns, including the Board of Education, the Sheriff and Police Departments (for crime writers), the junior college, high schools, tourist board, woman who holds the Indian casino purse strings, and the wife of the commander on the local military base. I did this by hand-distributing flyers the library made for upcoming speakers. I also interacted with all the sorts of writing groups in the area: Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers, various critique groups and reading groups.

Key to everything is the media. I took the time early on in my career to contact every newspaper in the area, especially small publications looking for newsworthy articles. I check periodically to make sure the same reporters are covering features. I ask what their deadline is for community news announcements. I ask if it would help if I drafted or wrote the article for them. Having been a newspaper woman in the past, I know these people are underpaid, overworked, underappreciated and stressed. To have someone offer to take some of the load off is heaven-sent. Do I get paid? No.

But I do get rewarded. My town is talking about giving me a book launch at the prestigious Carnegie Library. My books sell. I get written up in the media. I have two towns behind my career. I know people. We do lunch. They pay.

I'm not suggesting this philanthropic approach will work for everyone. If it's only your purse strings you are concerned with--not your fellow authors or your publisher's sales figures--then so be it. However, these are tight economic times. You can lament the buying public or you can offer them a free experience and hope they respond generously. Give a little to get a little.

So, ask yourself--how big is that box you're in? Don't you want to peek and see what's outside the box?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

With Change Authors Must Grow More Creative

Today, several members of the Virginia Romance Writers (including me) had a Valentine's Day book signing at a Barnes and Noble in Richmond, VA. Soon after we arrived we learned that the CRM who set up the signing with us is no longer there. Her job has been eliminated and all the managers on duty are taking over those responsibilities. The manager who worked with us today was gracious, but it was obvious the staff is disappointed at this turn of events.

Yesterday, I stopped in at the Barnes and Noble in New Town, Williamsburg and was surprised to learn that the CRM with whom I have worked is not longer there. Her job was eliminated as well. I was told that this is not an "across the board" elimination of CRMs. Instead, the jobs have been eliminated at the "smaller" stores. Since I do not consider the Short Pump Barnes and Noble, with two escalators, a smaller store, I was very surprised to discover that loss.

Location means a lot when it comes to book signings. The five authors were seated at a table on the second floor facing the children's department. Although the store made an announcement every half hour about the VRW authors, we missed the first floor traffic.

While we all need to have book signings to promote our books, I like the idea Patricia Sheehy presented about creating flyers telling what topics we are available to make talks about. She suggested giving them to local organizations looking for programs. That is an excellent promo idea, especially when done in conjunction with book signings and blogs.

The elimination of the Barnes and Noble CRMs is another sign of the fallen economy. Change is certain. Writers need to grow ever more creative in the ways they promote their work.

Mary Montague Sikes
Secrets by the Sea
Eagle Rising
Stranger in My Heart - coming soon
www.marymontaguesikes.com

Thursday, February 12, 2009

And Yet More Promo Ideas

I hope lots of emerging writers are finding this OTP site because the promotional ideas being generated are the result of our combined years of trial and error. And success. Right now, I'm actually booking talks and signings through next November.

There are two separate kinds of venues to explore (1) groups looking for speakers; these include Chamber, Writers Circles, Women's Groups and the Rotary, as well as libraries. Your primary objective here is to give a talk and hopefully sell books afterward. You may even get paid for your appearance; (2) pure book signings, in book stores and corporate venues; many corporations invite vendors in as an ongoing "treat" for their employees. Contact the Human Resources dept to find out about their attitudes and rules around this. Also, around the holiday times, there are lots of craft fairs that would welcome an author; table charges are generally minimal and you could share with another author.

Getting these engagements takes time and energy, but it's not difficult. Design fliers and send them to non-profit groups outlining a list of topics you're available to speak on. Get together with a few other authors in your area and offer to present a panel on writing and publishing. For pure book signings, I'd suggest a phone call rather than a flier. For fairs, read your local papers and be proactive in securing a space.

The rule here is the same for all relationships: show up, pay attention, and do the work. It's always worth the effort. -- Patricia Sheehy, author

Posting to Blogs and Other Such Stuff

Because it's a good idea to have new content on a blog, I thought I'd better put something on Oak Tree's blog since it's been awhile. Sure would like to see all the authors posting on a regular basis--bet Billy would like that too.

I'm posting on my personal blog every day this month--thought I'd missed a day, but I'd scheduled two blogs on the same day and fixed it. Believe me it isn't easy to think up something to say every single day. But I have a tracker on there and it's amazing to see how many people at least go the blog each day.

Of course I'm busily promoting my latest, No Sanctuary, and trying to tell everyone about it everywhere I go, sort of like leaving bread crumbs along the way.

I made wonderful posters and flyers to hand out to my writing group and mail out about my live book launch which is going to be at our church. When I gave them to my writer friends, one noticed I didn't have the date on the flyer. Eeeek! Fortunately, I hadn't sent them out yet, but did have them in envelopes and sealed. I've taken care of the problem.

In the meantime, I'm also working on my income taxes. Yes, I do have a life beyond writing and promoting.

And we got up to patches of snow on the ground--I know that's nothing to you folks in other parts of the country, but in the foothills of Central CA it's a big deal.

Marilyn
http://fictionforyou.com

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Promoting Fellow Authors and Pseudonyms

Adding a link to our Web sites is something each of us can do to help promote our fellow Oak Tree authors. I'm glad Mike Orenduff suggested it. I just went to my site and copied his URL to create a hyperlink on my links section. That's when I realized I do not have links to other authors which is my fault for not updating as I should. It would be great if each of you posted here or emailed me the URL you would like me to use. In return, please post www.marymontaguesikes.com on your Web site.

Don't be shocked when you go to my site and it switches to www.alexishudson.com. A couple of years ago I decided it would be a good idea to create an author pseudonym for books that I might like to write under a different name. That's when I chose the pseudonym, Alexis Hudson, and changed my Web site URL. Soon after that, I realized how much effort it was taking to create name recognition for just one name. Adding another to the mix didn't seem to make much sense. Maybe one day I'll use the other name, but not yet ...

Promotion is the most important thing we can do to develop name recognition. Let's help each other and promote Oak Tree as well.

Monti
Mary Montague Sikes, Author Secrets by the Sea and other Passenger to Paradise books

Trading links

The website for my Pot Thief murder mystery is up. Creating it was harder than writing the books, and a few gremlins still lurk therein; I can't make the "search this site" button work, but who cares? I have a page for links, and I'd like to add links to all OTP authors who have sites (all of you, right?). I don't know the protocol; do I ask your permission before adding the link? I'd also like you to return the favor and add my site - orenduff.org - as one of your links.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

I've Got No Business Being Here but...



On my personal blog I wrote about learning how to juggle which I feel like I'm doing.

Just briefly, I'm promoting No Sanctuary, my latest Rocky Bluff Crime novel from Oak Tree via the Internet every way I can think of.

I've started a new book in the series and have another done that I need to go over before sending it in. I'll soon have to do that with a book I've just finished in another mystery series I've authored with another publisher. And it's possible I'll be ghost writing another book--something I do periodically. Oh, and I'm also the program chair for the Public Safety Writers Association conference. http://www.publicsafetywriterc.com Oak Tree publisher will be there. This is a great conference.

Okay, this is what I'm doing so far in the promo of No Sanctuary.

Planned book launch at my church, made posters, will send out emails and post where locals will see it.

Doing twitters every so often about book. Everyone should be using twitter.com

Posting on my personal blog every single day. (Not always about book, but sneak it in whenever possible. http://marilynmeredith.blogspot.com

Posting periodically on my Rocky Bluff P.D. blog. http://rockybluffpd.blogspot.com
Basically this is a blog about the town of Rocky Bluff. Characters post from time to time.

I also post once a week on the Stiletto Gang blog--don't talk about my book there all the time, but do sneak in stuff at times. Once every two weeks I'm on Make Mine Mystery.

Once I get books, I'll be sending some out for review--always ask reviewer first if they'd like to review the book.

I talk about my book on different listserves that I'm on.

The month of March I'm doing a virtual blog tour. I'll certainly be letting everyone know where I'll be each day so you can follow me along if you're so inclined. I've done several blog tours and they're fun but time consuming.

I'm going to several conferences and conventions: Epicon, Mayhem in the Midlands, California Crime Writers conference, and Public Safety Writers Association.

I've already lined up several speaking engagements: Sunny arranged for the Hanford Library,I'll have a booth at the Celebration of the Whales, Willow Bridge Book Store, Yosemite Romance Writers, L.A. Times Book Festival, San Joaquin Sisters in Crime, Writers of Kern. That's through June.

Hopefully, that'll give some of you ideas.

I'm trying to get more library gigs, especially this summer.

I'm looking forward to it all.

Marilyn a.k.a. F.M. Meredith

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

And Now a Word from Sunny Frazier

Marketing. Promotion. Tooting your own horn. The bane of the writing life--or a boost?

Hi. I'm Sunny Frazier, one of the latest additions to the Oak Tree Press writing stable. I'm here to promote you!

Those are the magic words you're all hoping to hear. Am I right? Someone who will take the burden off your shoulders, tell the world about your book, make sales for you so you can spend your valuable time sitting at your computer cranking out the next novel.

Fugetaboutit!

I'm a writer too. My next mystery, WHERE ANGELS FEAR, is coming out very, very soon. But instead of kicking back, waiting for Billie Johnson to wave her publishing wand, I'm spending 10 to 12 hours a day at my desk. The only thing I'm kicking are the doors to promotional opportunities out there for the taking.

I believe in FREE. I believe in HARD WORK. I believe the only one responsible for my career is ME.

When my first book, FOOLS RUSH IN, came out in 2006, I was a novice at promotion. I did pretty well, but the Internet did not have much blogging going on or all the websites available for promotion. To be honest, I felt much of what was out there was a waste of my time. I had more important things to do than scour the Internet.

My attitude changed earlier this year. My New Year's resolution was to carefully examine cyberspace. I followed the leads as I came across them on Murder Must Advertise and other Yahoo groups. I used many of the skills I learned while working in a Narcotics unit at the sheriff's department, where I tracked down criminals by scouring high-level sites for clues of their whereabouts. The techniques I developed then became useful in an entirely different use now. And that's what I'm here to share with you.

I've isolated three key elements: finding sites, participating on sites and controlling the vast amounts of information.

This blog is just the first of many. I believe I can cut down the amount of time each of you spends on the Internet and guide you to sites that will make that time worthwhile. I can give you review sites, promotional opportunities, groups to get involved with, and anything that comes across my path on the information highway.

I have one purpose in doing this. I'd like to see Oak Tree Press grow and all of us grow with it. I'd like to see OTP authors bond and become a strong promotional unit. When I promote myself, I will promote Oak Tree, and that means I'm promoting YOU.

I'm not alone. Marilyn Meredith, also a new author to OTP, taught me much of what I know about promotion. She will also be imparting wisdom your way. I'm sure other authors will come forward until we are all sharing our knowledge with each other.

Together, as little acorns (and a few nutty authors!) we can make Oak Tree grow.

Monday, February 2, 2009

What's Your PQ?

PQ, or promo quotient, is a term I made up recently while pondering the fates of OTP books. One of my most frequent topics for wool-gathering sessions is "what makes a book sell?" and "why do some take right off and others just don't?"

One by one, I can dispel the rationales of distribution, strength of writing, topic, season of release. Exceptions pop up as fast as "rules." Somewhere in the midst of one of these thought-storms, I began to read Malcolm Gladwell's THE TIPPING POINT. Subtitled "How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference," this book became a best-seller analyzing how ideas and information spread, trends develop. Among the key factors, Gladwell says, is the presence of Market Mavens. As I read the next hundred pages discussing Mavens, I realized this is the X-factor in book-selling, and the PQ concept was launched.

Somewhere in this process, I got in a huge gab with Sunny Frazier. Sunny's WHERE ANGELS FEAR is coming out from OTP next month. She is a frequent workshop speaker and publisher of the MURDER CIRCLE, which is Page Six for crime fiction aficionados. One of her most popular workshops is Guerrilla Marketing. Suddenly it was clear to me: Sunny is a Maven!

To cut to the chase, Sunny and I have made a deal wherein she will offer her insights to other authors. We have an email address for questions and discussions BookPromoDept@aol.com Where appropriate, we will share the Q&A here on the blog.

This process won't be strictly re-active, however. Suggestions and tips may appear spontaneously in your email!

Exciting!

Billie