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Promote Your Fiction Book Through Spin Offs
by Patricia Fry
What’s a spin off? It’s a by-product or a
follow-up to the original. Within the context of a book, it might
be a sequel or any number of other writings related to the theme
of your book.
The point of a spin off is to generate more sales. Not only will
you have additional items to sell, but each book, pamphlet, guide,
article or list that you produce is a marketing tool for the original
Let’s say that you’ve written a novel that depicts life
in a small town in Pennsylvania, follow up with a book featuring
bed and breakfast inns in that state or create a mystery for readers
to solve based on some of the characters in your original book.
Maybe you’ve compiled a book of your poetry. Next, produce
a pocket calendar or greeting cards highlighting some of the lines
from your best poems.
Write a companion book for you historical novel profiling real
people from the period you featured in your original book or design
a walking tour map for the area where your story is set. Or design
a quaint book of quotes from that time period.
Produce a sequel to your original story and promote it to your
entire mailing list—especially those folks who purchased your
Write articles and short stories to bring attention to the theme
of your book. Submit them to appropriate magazines, newsletters
and Web sites. (Read about how to write and submit articles in A
Writer’s Guide to Magazine Articles, Matilija Press.)
Publish a newsletter related to the theme of your original book
or to the process of writing a novel. Promote it through your Web
site and to your customer list.
Package something with your book—an Indian dream catcher
with a book profiling an American native tribe, a magnifying glass
for a mystery novel or a packages of sunflower seeds for a book
of poetry that’s related to flowers and gardening, for example.
Plan carefully before launching your spin off. Ask yourself:
- Who is my audience?
- What have my readers asked for?
- Is there something I should have included in my original book?
- How will I distribute the spin off item?
- Is it cost effective to produce another book/pamphlet or other
Give your customers more than they expected. Think about how you
feel when you go to the store to buy an avocado, for example, and
discover that you can get two for the price of one. Delight your
customers by giving them something extra.
Create handouts to package with your book shipments and to give
at book signings, book festivals and presentations. Several authors
I know hand out well-crafted bookmarks or tiny charms depicting
an aspect of their story (an animal or a famous landmark for example.
I offer my meditation walking article to folks interested in my
metaphysical book, Quest for Truth (Matilija Press). And
I love handing out copies of some of my writing articles when promoting
my writing books. Budding authors particularly enjoy my article
featuring a self-publishing timeline.
Before thinking about your next book, consider writing a spin off
to promote your original book. Sometimes it pays to keep all of
your eggs in one basket.
© Copyright 2008, Patricia Fry
Patricia Fry is a career writer, author, speaker and editorial/publishing consultant.
She is the president of SPAWN (Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network)
www.spawn.org and the author
of 27 books, including The Right Way to Write, Publish and Sell Your Book
Visit her informative blog daily, www.matilijapress.com/publishingblog.
New book of cat stories
Patricia Fry announces her latest book: Catscapades, Tales of Ordinary and Extraordinary Cats www.matilijapress.com/catscapades.html.
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