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I’ve been working on marketing and promotion for the Twelve Planets this week. A book doesn’t finish when it arrives in bountiful copies in numerous boxes on your (mother’s) doorstep. In some ways, it’s only just the beginning of the process. This realisation is a hideous one after the months spent working on finetuning the contents.

But it’s the way it is. So this week I have been working on some media releases (Nick, I can call it that because I *am* sending them out to actual real media outlets :P). I sent my draft to a couple of people for comment and both of their individual responses were “dude, if this is what you do when sleep-deprived, OMG” (I paraphrased slightly, whatev).

And that had me thinking about a couple of things. I’m dog-tired. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in well over a month and before that too. I feel run down, I’m in post-con crash and emotionally I’m very fragile. All true. But I’m also a small business owner. And there are no days off or tired days or emotionally fragile days when it’s your own business. There’s no sick leave, no annual leave and no holidays. It’s my own hard-earned day job money that I’ve invested in this business. And the outcomes are mine to wear. I could have spent the money on a golf club membership or several trips to Paris or many other expensive pursuits. But I chose to invest it in this project of mine, this idea that I believe in and that I think, if I work hard enough at it, might just, one day, be something.

So media releases and promotion and marketing go on. And so does the beat.

And as I sit in full life reevaluation mode, questioning the direction I want to choose for my future, wondering if I’ve backed the right horse, I still plug away at the night job. I don’t even question it. The programme works if you work it. But you have to work at it every single day. Every day, I make sure that in some way I have promoted or publicised a title. No matter what else I do in the day, I make sure I’ve told someone new about the work I’ve published.



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6 Comments

  • By Thoraiya on 6 May 2011 at 7:00 pm

    And I appreciate it. Thank you!

    (As evidenced here: http://bookonaut.com/2011/05/thoraiya-dyer-on-authors-and-social-media/ )

    Thank goodness you do what you do, because I don’t do it!

    I guess if you decided to stop, I would have to do more, myself. No pressure ;)

  • By Tansy Rayner Roberts on 7 May 2011 at 11:24 am

    Your authors most definitely appreciate it. (loved that interview, Thoraiya – you have some very smart things to say about your take on social media as well as very true things about how much work Alisa puts in!)

    I think you talking about this stuff is important, because it’s too easy for work like that to be rendered invisible – and it’s important too for writers to realise how much work there is after publication, for all of us.

  • By AlisaK on 7 May 2011 at 5:40 pm

    Loved your interview! Thank you for the lovely things you said and for appreciating what I do behind the scenes. I guess until you work with someone, you don’t really know what goes on/what they’re like.

    And hey, you know you are the other half of this team! You’re awesome with the face to face getting the books out there. Very impressive!

  • By AlisaK on 7 May 2011 at 7:15 pm

    I think there is definitely an invisibility to the postproduction side of book publishing – definitely a devaluing or disregard of that side of the business seen locally recently. *cough* And yet ironically, possibly the most crucial and determining elements to success :)

  • By Ka'ela Ja'el on 8 May 2011 at 4:45 pm

    There really is the view that once the book is in physical form the work is over. Although, I guess that’s possibly true of many projects – whether it’s building a house or even having a baby.

    One of the things I want to do with The Seed is examine the business of writing and publishing, and explore all the hidden sides of the industry.

  • By AlisaK on 9 May 2011 at 8:01 pm

    There’s so much that most people wouldn’t see about the industry. I spend so much time on those aspects everyday but it’s mostly invisible to anyone who doesn’t live with me or get my emails about stuff as I work on it. I guess I’d like to talk more about it here. If I get all comfy in this space.

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