Saturday, April 29, 2017

Sharing my schedule for releasing an Indie book and marketing for any author

I have another blog where I write reviews and personal stories. Today I delved into the scheduling of a book launch. I feel it is good sound logical advice, so I will give a bit of a recap here. I only do this to help any writers like me that want to Indie publish and are afraid of all the steps. I hope this breaks it into simple to understand structure to take some of that fear away.  

You are still writing the book and you are getting close to the much anticipated moment when you can type The End! But you might not be there yet. This is the time to find your editor, choose your cover designer and wrangle up some beta readers.  
Many editors want you to have been at least beta read before they take a look at it so that there are less errors and problems for them to deal with. Three Beta Readers to me, are enough. Some writers use more some while use only a selected few. 

But lets plan for starting your process, three to four months before releasing your book. Take a look around at the different websites that are available for authors to set up, many basic ones are free, Blogger, Wordpress, WIX, Author's Den, just to name a few. 

  • Create your author website or author's blog.
  • Create an Author Facebook account or spruce up an existing author page.
  • Tweet out your new or revamped author page.
  • Share on your personal Facebook pages and in groups.
  • Share your character's journey on Twitter, Facebook, blog, and Website.
  • Set up Mailchimp or other sign up forms for newsletters.
  • Create a relationship with reviewers, bloggers, and readers.
  • Arrange for beta readers, editors, illustrators and cover artist.
  • Polish your book blurb and your elevator blurb.
Now we can work on these for the next few months and polish each step so that they become the piece of art you know they can be. At two months before the anticipated launch you need to be finished with the second draft and ready for eyes on the book. Contact your beta readers, get their input and start fixing those plot holes and confusing bits. Don't forget the semi colons. 

  • Final line, copy and editorial editing,
  • Final proofreading once all the changes have been made.
  • Begin to introduce characters in blog posts, Facebook posts, and tweets.
  • Create an email address for character reader interaction, if wanted.
  • Begin to network with parent/genre specific groups on Facebook, Twitter, and blogs.
  • Upload to Amazon as a pre-order. Pre-orders will also secure your title and author page on Goodreads.
    • You can upload an unedited version without a cover up to three months in advance as long as you make sure to upload the final version 3 days before launch.
  • Reach out to other bloggers about potential guest posts and character interviews.

This is where you have to wait on other people and have a moment to focus on the non-creative side of publishing. allow your editor to do their magic, while you focus on the author side of the business. 
You are one month out from your launch date and you have pretty much decided you will be ready to launch on a certain date. Claim it. Focus on completing all your tasks by that date. 

  • Increase name branding in all platforms.
  • Confirm blog interaction with the correct genre bloggers and reviewers. Arrange interviews, launch day events and guest posts leading up to the launch.
  • Create author group on Facebook inviting reviewers, supportive friends and network members such as illustrators, editors, bloggers, and known readers.
  • Confirm launch date and start sharing definite launch date.
  • Send out welcome newsletter introducing your characters, interesting information, and launch date.
  • Remind the newsletter readers of the Goodreads giveaway and invite them to read and review to make your launch a success.

Now you are gearing up, you are feeling the pressure, but you have a game plan. Stick with the plan. You are about three weeks from your launch date and it is all marketing while you make the last edits on your book. Sending it to the proofreader and once again waiting for responses.  Use this time to take it to the next step. 

  • Send out Newsletter announcing the launch date, request for ARC reviews, and guest blog opportunities. Never hurts to have new bloggers interested in hosting a post.
  • Host a cover reveal. Invite all your readers, friends, blogger friends, twitter followers and Facebook audience.
  • Advertise Cover reveal in Goodreads on groups for writers, readers, genre specific groups.
  • Make a Facebook page for your book. Invite people that enjoy your work to visit the page.
  • Make the page a merchant page with the buy now button.  Learn how here!
  • Like similar genre pages as your author page and book page.
    • Right, click on the down arrow next to the share button and you can like the page as your author and book pages.
  • Create a presence in Goodreads leading up to your launch.
  • Post on Goodreads in both groups and review areas.
  • Reach out to reviewers as soon as you have an advance copy available.

You are two weeks from Launch date and there are still more things you can do to prepare. If your edits are complete then upload the finalized version to your Amazon account so that when the book is sent to the pre-order buyers, it is the correct one. You can wait up until 3 days before it goes live, but I usggest yuou do it as soon as the finalized version is ready. 

  • Provide the links for your book to ARC readers on both amazon and Goodreads.
  • Send out newsletter thanking the ones that have joined your group, ARC launch team, and provided support by spreading the word.
  • Invite readers to pick up your book on launch day or using the pre-order button on Amazon and don't forget to provide the links.

One week from launch and you are beside yourself with anticipation and excitement. Relax, you are almost there. Let's go over some last minute steps to bring this to a successful conclusion. 

  • Post blog posts reminding followers of your launch. Invite them to the giveaway on Goodreads. Invite them to read and review your new book. Thank them for being a huge part of this process.
  • Blog about your release on your Goodreads author blog.
  • Bring your author page on Goodreads and Amazon up to date. Make sure you have a professional look and have connected your blog to your amazon Author page.
  • Create a launch party on your group page and send out invitations to those on your regular friends' list and author page followers. This is your moment to shine.

You have done it! It is Launch day and you are ready, calm, cool and collected. You know you have done everything in your power to make today a success. 

  • Celebrate!
  • Read your reviews.
  • Contact any reviewers that posted and thank them for being a part of your exciting day.
  • Enjoy your launch day party.
  • Blog about your exciting journey and share any early reviews. Remember to attach links to your books and author page.
  • Enjoy the fact that your much-loved project is now safely in the hands of the public.

I hope you enjoyed this check list of sorts to help you prepare for one of the most exciting days of your life as a writer.  Congratulations for your success.  

I hope these ideas help you along the path to your book launch. If you would like to be a part of my launch team, let me know. You can also find Sojourner McConnell on Facebook, Brand new  Facebook Group,  Twitter,  Goodreads, The Path of the Writer, and  Amazon.

And to show you I follow my own schedule I just tonight uploaded my book as a pre-order and it is now sitting on Amazon while I go through the other steps preparing for my June 2, 2017, launch.  Here is my new book, Who's That in the Cat Pajamas? 

On a personal note, I hope if you have children, you will pick it up. I am quite proud of it and excited to see it on Amazon. 


  1. Some great advice, Vicki. Shared on twitter and google.

    1. Thank you for sharing! I love being able to help others through my research.


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