When I first decided to self-publish, it made sense to me. In convenience stores, I often I wander to the self-checkout lanes when available. If someone tries to open a door for me, I always open the door next to it; not to be rude but just because it doesn't seem right that anyone do that for me. And there is never a time when I don't use the self-serve at the gas station. With so many people in this city, I always want to be alone.
So, I thought that it would be best if I handled every aspect of the publishing of my novel, Absolution. This was because I had wanted to follow the route that Amanda Hocking took, which is to do everything yourself. I tried to do the cover art. I tried to contact bloggers to do reviews. I tried to publish the ebook on several venues myself. After failing at all of these I sought help. One of the wonderful people I came across was Franny, who heads the Dark Mind Book Tours service.
What they did for me was to arrange all the things I wanted but couldn't because I have no experience or know-how. Silvia, Franny's partner in that venture, designed my blog to suit my needs. Franny spoke to bloggers to host me during my tour. There was a lot of wheeling and dealing going on in the background, which I was thankful I wasn't a part of. They also arranged giveaways, asking first how much I was willing to sacrifice as far as ebook copies went and swag. And they also arranged the reviews of the novel that later went to other sites like goodreads.com, Amazon, Smashwords, etc. All this while Tweeting and Facebooking about my novel--this last part done so constantly that it surprised me how much effort they were putting into it!
In short, they made the process of introducing my novel to the world less stressful for me. I am a novice at marketing and I don't have the heart to tell someone that they should buy my novel. But Franny and Silvia were there to do that for me. I even struck up a friendship with Franny that I hope to keep long into the future. But if I said that this is all that they did for me and my novel, I would be understating the most important aspects of the tour.
I met so many wonderful people during each blog stop, including people who have been incredibly beneficial to the sales of the novel. And this is what really made the tour special, talking to wonderful people who you would not otherwise approach or couldn't approach because they are tied up. In this age when self-publishing is a fad, bloggers who review books are overwhelmed. But they all know Franny and thanks to her, I have new friends.
Now, it is essential that you, the future author of TheNextGreatNovel, to research who they can benefit before trying to reach them. Email Franny. She always responds and quickly! She'll give it to you straight.
All in all, I thought that the Dark Mind Book Tour of Absolution was one of the best experiences I've had so far this year. It was rewarding on many levels. And who knows, maybe you'll gather a group of friends who will believe in your work as much as you do (more so in some cases!).
PS: Next post: The Myth of "Show, Don't tell"