Thursday, August 12, 2010

Book Press Releases -- Does Anyone Read Them?

The next step in the marketing of Where Love Once Lived is to prepare and distribute press releases announcing the book. I filled out an online questionnaire from CreateSpace that asked for information needed for the press releases. I won't give my answers here since that would be too lengthy, but here are the questions. I have added some comments however.

Are you using a name other than your own for publication? If so, please provide.

What is the full title of your work?*

E-mail Address* (This is the e-mail address that will be used in the press release as a method of contact for the media.)

Phone Number (This will be used in the press release as an alternate method of contact for the media.)

Website (If you have a website, please provide us with it and we will make sure to include this in the release)

Your city and state

Note: Although I live in Georgetown, Texas now, I decided to use Austin, Texas on the press releases. This is because more people know Austin than Georgetown and because the book is set in Austin.

Biography* (The biography provides information to help establish your credibility or further connect you with your audience. Please provide us with some biographical information, such as education and career information, family status, awards you have won, and/or any qualifications that could establish expert status. NOTE: Responsible journalists may choose to verify all members' facts before publishing biographical information).

Who is your target audience?

This is what I said: This book is about Christians living, making mistakes, and growing from those mistakes. I tried not to make it preachy, and didn't align it with a particular denomination. I suspect it would appeal to a more mature audience because the protagonists are in their fifties. However, several younger friends have read the manuscript and said they enjoyed it. I aimed for the same people who read Jan Karon's Mitford series.

Please provide a brief synopsis of your work.

What is your theme and primary message?

Here is what I answered: With God's help, it's never too late to find happiness.

Tell us about the inspiration for your work.

Note: Surprisingly, there was a lot to be said about the inspiration for Where Love Once Lived starting with the idea for a bookmobile story that came to me while driving one back in 1960's to a sermon I heard in 2004 from my pastor, Jeanie Stanley.

Why do you think your work is newsworthy?* (Can you relate your work to any current events? What makes your work different than others on the market)?

Note: Here I told about the interracial aspects of the novel.

Provide any additional information you want us to consider for your press release (i.e. reviews, awards, etc.). (NOTE: Responsible journalists may choose to verify all facts before publishing this information).

Note: Here, I listed the awards won by Where Love Once Lived in manuscript contests plus some other things about me. CreateSpace called and said they would have to verify the contest wins. They wanted me to send them a photo of the certificates. However, I already had them on my website, so they viewed them as we talked on the phone. Here they are if you want to see them:

I started this posting by asking does anyone even read press releases anymore. I don't know, but CreateSpace guarantees the information will be sent to more than a thousand outlets. That's to happen in 3 to 4 weeks. I guess we'll see what happens.

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