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Write for you BUT with readers in mind

Mel Hopkins

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So, you've finished writing your first book and after you've blown through your friends and family list; now, it's time to find your readers.  You know, those people who don't know you but will want to read your book if they knew about it?

In other words, it's time to market your book. If you haven't thought about marketing until now, that's ok. The first step to finding your audience is to understand why, who and how. To determine it, backtrack to why you wrote the book in the first place. 

 

 Keep in mind, Marketing (promotion) doesn't dictate WHAT an author should write. It's just that the author should have a group in mind when they do. 

 

Determining "who" you wrote the book about helps you find like-minded people. For example, if you've written a biography (genre), the subject's characteristics will help to begin building an audience. Is the subject a black woman? Then those who interested in reading about black women's lives are a clue to uncovering your audience. Consider "why" you wrote about this black woman - knowing why you wrote about her will narrow down the interests to promote.

Such as, this black woman is the mother of GPS. 

 

So how did she accomplish this goal? The "how" usually contains drama and conflict. 

 

A Black woman in Jim Crow south overcomes sexism, racism, and classism to design the prototype of the (GPS) Global Positioning System (computer technology). 

 

So, there you have it. The first step to marketing your book after you've written it is creating a one-sentence explanation sometimes called the logline or pitch.

Now you can begin your promotional efforts.


#bookpromotion Inspired by ReadingBlack.com club: Open Letter to Promoters



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Very concise!

 

I wanna read this book! Was one actually written om this subject or was this just example?

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6 hours ago, Troy said:

I wanna read this book! Was one actually written om this subject or was this just example?


This was a made up example but Gladys (Brown) West is the "hidden figures" of the GPS.  I don't think her biography is complete but I read her story recently

 

 

 

 

 

 






 

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@Mel Hopkins, I watched the video and read the article -- an interesting story. So much talent went into the GPS project over a period of decades. Today our best and brightest go to Facebook and Goldman Sachs; what a waste of talent, but I digress...

 

I like your advise because, you wrote, "Marketing doesn't dictate WHAT an author should write. It's just that the author should have a group in mind when they do."

 

An author has to, otherwise they won't sell many books because they won't know who the audience is or how to reach them. Don't believe your family will buy your book in droves -- many will want the "hook up" 😉 

 

Of course many writers only write books demanded by the market, and that is perfectly fine.

 

Publishers often want to publish specific types of books because they have a particular aesthetic, sensiblity, mission, or are simply chasing percieved consumer demand. They then look for wrters to fit the bill.

 

Strife between writers and publishers arise when there is disagreement between what an author writes and perceived consumer demand. The impacts everthing from cover design, the book's title, and the editing process. Somtimes the publisher is right, but they often get it wrong -- especially when it comes to Black books. Which is why we need more culturally Black publishers, editors, and booksellers.

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@richardmurray  Thank you!  Happy New Year!
 

On 1/2/2020 at 7:42 AM, Troy said:

Today our best and brightest go to Facebook and Goldman Sachs; what a waste of talent, but I digress...


@Troy     LOL!  You don't miss a chance to give facebook the boot LOL  GOOD JOB!!!  Facebook and anything it touches is anti-life...

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On 1/7/2020 at 1:48 PM, richardmurray said:

perihelion

What is "perihelion"?  I could search for it  but no search engine would tell me why you  wished me a happy one (smile) .  MLK jr day  isn't on my radar this year.  Sometimes I'm moved by his message but this year I'm interested in other species - and how they are dealing with mother nature. 

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IT is the moment in the elliptical orbit of any body around our sun when the sun is closest to it. In this case, the earth was closest to the sun in a moment in jan 5th. Every day after the perihelion the earth is farther away from the sun in the elliptical orbit until the aphelion, what i call the natural midyear. After the earth is farthest away from the sun in the elliptical orbit, the aphelion, the earth will continually move closer to the sun till the perhelion. When I say closer or farther  I mean based on distance from a line from the center of the sun to the center of the earth.  @Mel Hopkins

fair enough, in many ways, mlkjr's views/philosophy/desire has had another grand rebuttal.

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Hello, Mel

 

Gladys Mae West is another Hidden Figure. She reminds me of my mother. Quite a story.

 

I read your reply earlier, but I Just found this. Thank you. Having another example is helpful.

 

I will refer to your questions to create the promotion for my next book, The Culinary Art Portfolio of Josephine E. Jones. 

I have mostly finished the text. It just needs one more revision before I send it to the developmental editor.

 

 

What I came up before asking your questions was this:

 

The Culinary Art Portfolio of Josephine E. Jones with Ready-to-Frame prints, where food and art intersect.

 

This is my revision after using your questions. Please let me know if I'm on the right track.

 

Who, Why, and How: 

 

The Culinary Art Portfolio of Josephine E. Jones with Ready-to-Frame prints 

The first black woman in management at a Fortune 500 company in 1967, who overcame racism, sexism, and 

classism, to create food that looked too good to eat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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10 hours ago, Wendy Jones said:

The Culinary Art Portfolio of Josephine E. Jones with Ready-to-Frame prints, where food and art intersect.

@Wendy Jones 

 

"The Culinary Art Portfolio of Josephine E. Jones with Ready-to-Frame prints, where food and art intersect."


You nailed it right here. I want to read, see and have this book on display in my home!  So as you can see, just from this title and introduction; I already know I'm in this audience.  I know there are others in the audience too. 

And here's why - #arthistory #africanamerican #womenshistory #chef #foodporn #gastronomy #oralhistory #pictorialhistory are some of the tags that popped into my head.

I also believe "all art is political" ; so in the content I would expect to read about a change agent too.
 -
Art is a movement. - Food is America's pastime  and  "Food Porn" as the young people call it today - is all over Instagram, pinterest and maybe even facebook as a club.   In 2019 , We finally got our very first black woman Michelin star chef. In. 2019.  So, imagine to learn there was black woman who was doing this way before social media was a thing! 

You are tying the past to the present and that would make this book hard to ignore. 

You've nailed this! Answering the rest of those questions just help you and your publicist to promote your brand in a way that secure you as an authority on Black/African American women history. While your mother may be the protagonist in the narrative you are still highlighting the journey of a group of black women and documenting the period for the annals of American history.   Your brand is shining.  

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Thank you, Mel. You have made my day.

10 hours ago, Mel Hopkins said:

I also believe "all art is political" ; so in the content I would expect to read about a change agent too.

 

Yes, the text next to each picture gives ingredients, process, and an anecdote that includes a quote from my mother or a story that illustrates not only her philosophy about food, but, of course, about life.

 

From the beginning, I make it clear that it is not a cookbook or a how to book, but a book that will inspire some to create their own culinary art, others to enjoy the art when they frame the perforated large format prints on their wall, and everyone to be touched by my mother's story. It is a companion book to the first book, An Extraordinary Life: Josephine E. Jones.

 

The talented illustrator has created an elegant cover that is a work of art, just like the contents of the book.

 

Now if I can get the emergency loan-grant to pay the publicist, I won't have to attempt to do it myself.

 

Thanks again.

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