What does Debra do in between releases?
It's been a while since I've had a new release. My last release was New Year's Eve at The Corral which made its debut last December. The beginning of this year started out with a fairly major dry spell for me. I was away from writing for a really, really long time. I picked it back up in the summer again and was able to make enough progress to submit a completed story to a new publisher in October. As you know, now I'm in a holding pattern on that one until I hear back...probably in January or February.
In the meantime, I spent the month of November on a new project and won my first NaNoWriMo. At some point I need to finish up that mss and get it polished to send off...somewhere. It will all depend on what happens with the submission I have out there right now. I have to admit, I was a bit burned out after NaNo and haven't really been back at actual writing with any kind of consistent schedule at all. But I'll get back to it. The characters and setting are never far from my mind, I just needed a little break after the intensity of November.
In December I participated in a Facebook release party for a fellow TWRP author. I'd done a very simplified release party for myself once, but had never participated in one for another author with a multitude of 'hosts'. It was quite the adventure! I learned a lot. During the event I noticed that many of the authors have really neat 'promo ads' as I call them. (I'm sure they have an actual name, but that label works for me!) Since I've been trying to be a bit more active on social media, I've noticed a lot of these 'promo ads' as well on both Facebook and Twitter.
So I decided to give it a go. I'm a big fan of Publisher, so I did some copying, pasting, cropping, resizing, and downloading free clip art and graphics, and I've been creating my own promo ads. After creating in Publisher, I save as a jpeg and then I can just insert into posts on Facebook and Twitter as a picture. Here are the ones I've done so far:
This week I'll do one for my NYE story, and then probably put together ones for my other books as well. I also want to do one for my Corral series and one for just the holiday stories. They're pretty quick and easy to do. I don't spend hours and hours on them for sure. A professional graphic artist would probably do a bit better with design and layout, but for me, they work. And they're fun for me to do! I try to do each one a little bit differently, but I'm really digging the cover inside a e-reader device, so I tend to use that a lot. Sometimes I include a blurb or a tag line or a review.
I've joined some book marketing Facebook sites, so last week I was really plugging my Christmas stories. Even though they aren't new releases, it's been fun breathing new life into them with different posts and these 'promo ads'.
So, no, an author doesn't really ever have down time, it's all a matter of figuring out how to drive readers your way, whether your release is brand spanking new, or if you're just revisiting it to attract a new audience. Updating my web-site and taking a look at Instagram are also on my to-do list in the next couple of weeks.
Until next time,
Happy Reading and Happy New Year!