Ask the Publicist: Indies

How do you make an impact on Indies? Four simple words ..... gas up the car. Indies are all about relationships -- with their customers and with authors. If you take the time to come by and introduce yourself and your book, it's a HUGE deal.

This summer, one of my clients, Sam McLeod, spent several weeks driving around the south promoting his book, Big Appetite: My Southern-Fried Search for the Meaning of Life. He either did a signing or a drop-by at just about every Indie from Memphis to Chapel Hill. And the Indies of SEBA said thank-you by selecting the book as a Summer Okra Pick.

I wish I could say that mailings would do the trick, but it's the very rare book that takes off because of a mailing. And I know the thought of hitting the road is daunting. So start close to home. Make a list of bookstores in your area (both Indie and chain). Call the store, tell them you're a local author (or an author passing through town) and ask if you could come by and sign stock. If they don't carry your book, politely ask if it would be possible to drop off a copy for them to read. This is hard humbling work, but look at it as an investment for the future. Good luck!

Comments

Allison Brennan said…
Thanks for the info, Lucinda, I appreciate it! It's as I fear -- I can't hit the road. My few local indies who I have personally contacted just aren't interested in carrying my titles (one store will order 2 of each of my releases and reorder, but when I tried to arrange to send my fans there for autographed books, they wouldn't do it.) I have five kids, aged 6 to 17, so traveling aside from conferences is impossible. But I'll definitely consider a road trip in the future!
Mia Marlowe said…
Excellent info, Lucinda. Now, how do I find out about where the indies are? If I was taking a road trip from Boston to Missouri in May when my next release comes out, is there some place that lists all the indies along I-90 for example?

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