Laurie speaks the truth: everything about your publishing life is perfect in your head. From the story to its promotion, we’ve got it all “Ultimate Grand Supreme” (to borrow a term from those tiara-wearing toddlers) in our gray matter. But what ultimately oozes out ain’t so bad, either. It’s just that we worry about what YOU think.
That’s what has hit me lately, biting my nails over the reception for my book.
Have I been promoting it TOO much? I mean, I’ve been blogging since 2007 and achieved a nice following. When I began writing for children, I launched the blog. It seemed like a natural thing for a writer to do. Now I worry that I started crowing about my book too early, so that by the time it’s released next June, everyone will be so sick of it, they’ll zoom right past it in the bookstore. “Oh, that book by that woman,” they’ll say, hugging their purses tighter.
And that’s if they can even FIND it in the bookstore. That worries me even more. I recently went to purchase a friend’s book. I knew what I was looking for but couldn’t locate it. I finally grabbed an employee who found it in the corner of the store on the BOTTOM shelf. Not face out. Not even categorized properly as a graphic novel. If I can’t find it, how can the general book-buying public?
Plus, I hear there’s a lot of monster books coming out this winter and spring. They’re the new pirates/vampires/zombies of picture books. Will those other monster books pave the way for mine, or will people be monstered out by June? “Oh, another monster book by that woman,” they’ll say, dragging their children away.
I dream that my book will have its own display that looks like the Monstore itself, with blinking lights and a shiny red-striped arrow. Maybe even with a button, that when pressed, blares an echoing James Earl Jones who declares, “Oh, that book by that woman that YOU MUST BUY, LUKE.”
*Sigh.* One can dream, right?
But the reality is that in the big bookstores, the picture book wall is being eclipsed by the toy section, and the end-cap featured books are those with a long history of stellar sales. You know, those fancy-schmancy titles. Not a debut book.
So continue to promote, I will. Like Princess Leia I say, “Help me, blog readers, you’re my only hope.” I just pray you’ll tell me when you’ve had it up-to-here with my publicity attempts.