Pure Slush Books is a micropublisher. Yes, we publish books, but in a small way. We are not a major publisher, nor do we have a major publisher’s resources. Which means promotion of your Pure Slush book must be inventive, and in the long-run will be largely up to you.
Authors of print books Pure Slush has published have contributed to the list below, in action and in writing! Thanks to Gill Hoffs for contributing most of the list below.
A short and insightful article on book promotion, written for Black Heart Magazine, can be found by clicking here.
There are many ways you can promote your book. These are just some ...
1. Have a launch party for your book. This should include
• readings from the book (which you can record and then upload onto YouTube)
• a cake with the book’s cover on it (photographs well, tastes even better). Gill Hoffs did this for her PS book Wild: a collection as well her second book about the sinking of the RMS Tayleur.
• other drinks and snacks, which may be relevant to the plot and / or characters of your book
• holding the launch at a time and place people can make it without taking time off work, so in the evening or on a weekend. (Evening works better.)
2. Get people who buy it to send you pictures of it, that they don’t mind being shared on Facebook. Someone purchased The Merrill Diaries and then took a picture of it on their boat in the Pacific and this was posted online, with a snappy caption about Merrill travelling all over he world … and where next?
3. Encourage people who’ve read it to write a review for their own site, someone else’s site, and/or Amazon - if they’re a friend or family member, encourage them to declare the tie so it's credible.
4. Give away copies of the book on a site where they give an indepth review and have a decent readership - be sure to promote this and link to it in Facebook groups and on twitter etc. Encourage discussion in the comments.
5. Write guestblogs where you can mention your book (without it being too blatant a plug) and something that would interest a reader in it. Write about your path to publication, tips, warnings, highpoints, lowpoints (in an amusing way), and any particular favourite pieces. Think about what interests you in other people’s blogs and interviews and see if there's anything similar you can do with yours.
6. Approach other sites like Nathaniel Tower’s Cold Reads and see if they would be interested in doing a podcast of one of the stories in your book (so long as there’s some kind of mention of who's publishing the book and where the listener can buy it).
7. Have other short pieces published on other sites and make sure your book, the publisher, and where to buy it are mentioned in the bio - especially if it’s a site where you're likely to be interviewed too. The more a reader gets to know you and likes you, or feels a connection with you, the more interested they're likely to be in your book and the more they’ll root for you and it.
8. Get some flyers made - Vistaprint are cheap and can look professional - make sure there are no typos, and ask cafés, libraries, shops etc if you can put them up. Enclose one or two with every signed copy you post off.
9. Have the cover on your business card, and discreetly hand it out whenever you can.
10. If you see an interesting article, preferably with images, that has a strong link to something in one of the stories in your book, link to it online and mention that. Don’t try for a hardsell approach, let people ask you about your book and respond nicely. An example would be when Gill came across an article on drowned villages, and wrote a little bit about being fascinated with them and how they helped inspire The Rabbit and the Dam in her book.
11. Ask cafés or other small businesses that sell locally produced items if they would consider carrying a copy or two in return for a set percentage. With their permission, take a nice photo of your book there, and post it with a thank you and where to find them online. Gill’s was in the Daisy Cupcake Café in Ayr, and she made sure to mention how delicious their cakes were and what her favourite flavour was. A blanket thank you is boring, be specific, and help promote them in return.
12. Ask sites / journals that have previously published the stories in your book (if any) if they would help promote the book in some way. Be gracious, and make sure you give them an 'out' so they don’t feel cornered, and you don’t have your feelings hurt if it’s a no.
13. Perform readings at open mic nights and literature festivals, with business cards, flyers, and copies to hand - and change in case someone buys some.
14. If there’s a special offer on the site printing your book, mention it as a heads-up to anyone considering buying a copy from the site.
15. Establish a Pinterest site and include photos of things that are relevant to your book’s plot, characters, setting or development.
16. Include a taste of page, with great quotes from the stories or chapters in your book.
17. Approach sites that include reviews and book interviews to review your book and / or interview you about the book.
18. Promote the book on your own site or blog and personal social media channels.
19. Schedule readings at local bookstores.