I have had such a lot of support for Dandelions and Bad Hair Days and I am grateful to everyone that has worked with me to get the manuscript ready and the word out there. Loudhailers at the ready, we are preparing for publication.
But now that the launch is booked for the 10th October 2012 (to tie in with World Mental Health Day) I am reminded of that horrid feeling I had as a teenager when organising my birthday party. What if no-one turns up?
I am not after sympathy and neither am I being horribly needy and wanting affirmation (although that is always nice). I am just highlighting how difficult it is to market a book when writers are often people (like me) generally more comfortable sitting at home, alone, at a keyboard pouring words out on to real or virtual paper.
In the past I have always been reticent when it comes to selling. I usually apologise when facing people with raffle tickets, or fail to pick the right moment when people are sniffing around our stall at a car boot sale. I pounce, open my mouth and seem to send people scattering with fear at my over the top bonhomie.
Why did I decide to have a launch in the first place when I am prone to anxiety and panic? Don’t think that hasn’t crossed my mind. But most people feel nervous as a book approaches publication and public or virtual launches become more and more important in the increasingly competitive publishing market. Without a bit of a splash there is every chance the book could sink without trace. Lots of people have invested time and effort into DABHD and the contributors have bared their souls for it, wanting it to raise awareness of depression and anxiety as an issue that can affect us all. Profits will go to SANE and other nominated mental health charities and so the more we sell the more we achieve. It is as simple as that. But it doesn’t make it any easier.
I have contacted the local press and would be thrilled if it got picked up in the wider media. I am open to offers to write for blogs on a virtual tour. I am trying hard to market the book on social media without bombarding people with scheduled tweets. In the end, this is a moment in time and those of us involved in the DABHD project must enjoy it. Enthusiasm is an effective selling tool, and we have bucket loads of it in our determination to get the message across.
Now – what to put in the party bag……
The launch of Dandelions and Bad Hair Days – untangling lives affected by depression and anxiety is published on 10th October 2012 to tie in with World Mental Health Day and launched on the same day at Brendon Books, Bath Place Taunton at 7pm.