Book Promotion – Mistakes to Avoid

Hundreds of experts are out there writing, blogging, and speaking about what authors need to do to promote their a course in miracles but sometimes, authors need to hear about what not to do as well.

I’ve assembled a few of the more outlandish stories I’ve heard, and while they may seem truly crazy, I guarantee they are all actual things authors have done in the process of writing or marketing their books. Just on the slim chance you might be going down the road to crazy authorship, here are a few warnings of what not to do:

Bookstore Mistakes:

These two stories were both told to me by a friend who manages a bookstore:

We agreed to carry this author’s book on consignment. As long as a book continues to sell, we will keep carrying the book. But one author did not sell any books, so after six months, I called him to tell him we could no longer carry his title. He informed me that he had actually sold twenty books in my store. I told him the stack of eight books we had initially taken from him was still there. He replied that he had been coming in every couple of weeks and refilling the stack. Because we are not a computerized store but do manual inventory, when he kept refilling his stack, we had no way of keeping track that the books had sold, and consequently, I couldn’t pay him for those books. Bottom line, check with the bookstore manager before leaving new books in the store.

We had a local author whose books we placed in the local book section. One day I came into the store and all of her books were on the table in the front of the store with the bestsellers. I moved them back to the local author section. When the situation happened again, I explained to the author that customers looking for local books would have difficulty finding her books if they were not in the local section, but it didn’t seem to make a difference. A few days later, I came in and her books were again on the front table. After I had to move them a couple more times, I finally called the author and told her we would not sell her books anymore.

Festivals:

This story was told to me by an author who attended an art fair:

I was at an art fair and sharing a booth with another author. She had just had her story turned into an audio book. As a way to market herself, she decided she would bring a pair of headphones with her so people could stop by and listen to the audio book. Only she didn’t stop there. She stood outside of the booth and then ran up to people and put the headphones on their heads without asking their permission all the while exclaiming, “Listen to my book!” Needless to say, she kept people from getting anywhere near the booth to see my book and people were clearly starting to go out of their way to avoid us when they saw what she was doing to other innocent passersby.

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