Friday, April 15, 2011

Bad Publicity Ideas

1. Tattoo your web address on your back and run streaking downtown.

2. Rap your book blurb on YouTube.

3. Shave your book title into your facial hair.

4. Advertise your book signings with a cardboard sign reading "Will Write For Food."

5....(any recommendations?)


  1. Have T-shirts printed for your children.

    Front: Book cover and website.

    Back: "Please buy my Mommy's book so I won't have to subsist on stale goldfish and spam."

  2. Hold your book under your prisoner number on mug shots.


  3. Step one: Distribute ARC's, focusing mainly on shady Twitter-based reviewers.

    Step two: Pen lengthy emotional responses to all critical reviews (and the positive ones if there's time). Remember, caps lock and exclamation points are tools at your disposal, and as a professional, you should use them liberally.

  4. Hold a book signing at the local tack and feed store--but only if you've written an urban thriller.

  5. Okay, I don't have it in me to be silly, right now, so here are some serious thoughts on the topic:

    …Um, Simone Elkeles actually has rapped book trailers that are fantastic. Though she isn't the one who does the rapping.

    There's a local self-published author I met hand-selling his own books at the B&N down the street. He had set up his own "publishing company" and evidently used an offset printer. The way he sold his books was to use a rather transparent emotion-based sales pitch that told me he was more interested in making impulse sales than to discover fans. The sales pitch frankly turned me off.

    I bought one anyway, and his sales pitch was every bit as exaggerated as I expected. I've been tempted to pull out my magenta pen, mark it up, and mail it back to him. But then I'd be short a good sample to hand writer friends for them to practice finding errors in characterization, pacing, plotting, and grammar.

    Therefore, my "don't" contribution:

    Claim readers will LOVE your book and that it will tug on all their emotions. That's not readers/reviewers' jobs or anything.

  6. Are you looking for bad ideas here or good ones? The facial hair one definitely won't work for you...unless your husband does it instead. =)