Book Marketing or Winking at a Boy in the Dark

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The one thing I know for sure about book promotion is that there’s no shortage of information.

I’ve been reading and bookmarking how-to articles for the last couple of years, but when it comes to promoting my writing (and probably flirting), I think I probably resort to that winking in the dark stuff.

But then my very first print copy of my YA book, Come Back to Me, arrived in the mail.

Having a copy of my book made being published feel more real.

Made me feel like I wanted to do a little book flirting.

Which is a good thing, because if you want your book read, then you need to get your book OUT THERE.


I can’t just sit in my office and wink out of the window while holding my shiny, new book.

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Gotta do some book marketing.

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book marketing dolphin show_opt

VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

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 adam levine promoting my book_opt

An endorsement from Adam Levine? You never know, he could like my “voice.”


Speaking of promotion, my book is now officially available in paperback at Amazon (all other formats can be found here). Plus, my book will be experience it’s very first blitzing in May (a promo blitz is kind of like the opposite of winking in the dark). 🙂

Do you have marketing advice to share? Are you any good at flirting? If so, do you know any celebrities?

Have a spectacular kind of week!

Coleen xo


54 thoughts on “Book Marketing or Winking at a Boy in the Dark

  1. Okay, those are pretty awesome book marketing ideas! How did you train that dolphin to do that without getting the pages wet? Fabulous! I love that you have a book to hold! That’s a major moment in your literary career. Enjoy it. Savor it. And now go post more images in Times Square. That one is pretty darn cool, too. Adam Levine? Yep, that’s the best.



  2. LOL! How much do I love those photos? Man, is Hollywood smart when it comes to billboards. 😉 I can vouch for your book being a worthy one—great stuff!

    Marketing is such a wonky topic, partly because different tactics work well for different authors. I think experimenting is pretty important, for that reasons, and drawing on our own strengths. I’ve been finding quality reviews, Facebook events and blogging to be helpful. Speaking/signing, etc., at events at which people are already present has also worked well. Rather than arrange to read at a bookstore, for example, I’ll read at a book-geared event (full of readers), or sing at an indie-music fest. I’ve heard spectacular things about GoodReads giveaways—an arena I’ve yet to tap into. Good luck!


    1. Thanks, August! I’ve heard great things about Goodreads giveaways too. That’s first on my list as soon as my box o’books arrives. 🙂
      I love your ideas because I think it speaks to using our strengths and special talents. Like your singing, there’s ways to customize the promotion experience. Love that!


  3. Haha! Funny post Coleen – and loved your marketing pics! Especially the one with the dolphin!

    I’ve been winking in the dark, but with any luck, the sun will start to rise soon 😉


  4. I love the photos! It has occurred to me to use a billboard. I don’t think they are that expensive. There is one right outside of Boulder. I have fantasized about inviting everyone to join my Wild Ride for about 3 seconds, then reality comes rushing back.
    Keep putting your book out there!


    1. I have no concept of the cost of a billboard but have you heard of car wrapping? I don’t think it costs much. You could have your blog header on your car. 🙂 AKA wild ride? 🙂 I wonder if that would get more of a response,or at the very least conversation in the parking lot.


  5. I love the book marketing quote and the pictures. Clever and fun! I second the idea of a post on photoshopping. You are a lady of many talents. And congrats again on your first book baby. It’s a priceless feeling to hold her for the first time.


  6. Hahaha! Love how they got funnier as each pic went on! As a guy that works in advertising I totally loved your ad efforts. Sheesh – how much did you have to pay Adam Levine to hold up your book in concert?


  7. Those are great promo pics, Colleen! When is your blitz? I guess I wink in the dark. Haven’t done a giveaway on Goodreads yet and my 90 days on KDP Select will be up in ten days and I haven’t used any of my five days for free downloads. Guess I better do that next week.

    Your book makes a fabulous billboard! Love the cover.


    1. Thanks, Lynn. The blitz starts May 1st. I’m trying a variety of things to see what happens. 🙂 Good luck with your free days! I definitely have seen WANAs having success with that! 🙂


  8. I see you winking! Congratulations on the paper version!

    I like what you’ve done so far with the marketing. That should see a spike in sales.

    I’ll spread the word from my end.

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt


  9. Love your marketing ideas! I’ll be looking for that dolphin show the next time I go to Sea World. 😉 I think I would be like you in this arena, when I get to this point. But I hear that from a lot of authors. Some of us are just not equipped to be salespeople. Give me a cave filled with writing tools and comfort food any day of the week!


    1. If I didn’t know I’m not a good salesperson from my stint at selling Mary Kay, well, I know for sure now. LOL Although considering I hardly wear makeup, I was truly at a disadvantage. At least with a book there is the bonus that I know the product. 🙂 Thanks, Kate!


  10. Fantastic marketing ideas. I think you need to work in some crazy rock climbing marketing idea as well. Or a team of high-rise window washers all wearing shirts advertising your shirt so that everyone inside the building sees it and there are sooo many of them it makes the evening news. 😀


  11. Hi Colleen,
    First, off…Congratulations!! Very exciting about the print copy, will definitely get my copy. Don’t know if this will help and have no other info, except that Jason had visited a bookstore called Fountain Bookstore in Shockoe Slip and they told him they favor local writers and do events, book signings. There was a list of criteria for them to stock your book, but may be worth checking into just in case. Good luck!


  12. I don’t have any marketing advice – but i am gonna order the book! (actually, just did) It must be awesome to hold your own book – with your name on it in your hand. Maybe one day for me, maybe not. Keep us posted on the progress! Like the dolphin and the Starbuck’s shots, whose name was on the drink?


      1. book arrives today – day 2 of no school – bad weather days, maybe I’ll have a latte with a made up name, but i’d probably forget what name I gave and it would be cold by the time I got it! 🙂


  13. For someone that winks in the dark, I’d say you’ve come into the light in a big way Coleen! You are one clever girl! Love all your ideas and pics. And I think there is a promoter in there somewhere. You’re going to do great! 🙂


    1. Duh. Now I have to reply to myself because somehow I clicked on my comment before I said anything brilliant–or otherwise. Sheesh. I’m reading through your fun post and thinking how creative you are. And I’m wondering how I could get to Sea World and hand my book off to a dolphin trainer — what, do you bribe ’em with fish? — and then I see you shout out my book at the end your post.
      And that, my friend, is what it’s all about. Friends telling friends about each others’ books. And blogs. And whatever else …
      Thanks for making me smile.


      1. Some days I feel like I’m replying to myself too, Beth. LOL
        I’m looking forward to reading Catch a Falling Star! 🙂
        Oh and a lovely basket of squid and mackerel will make a book promoting dolphin VERY happy. 🙂


  14. LOL. I love that analogy. These are great pictures. Awesome cover. If you’d like to pop over on my blog in May, email me and we can set up a date and post. 🙂


  15. Yay! A shiny new book. You know, I love that the cover coordinates with summertime. What a perfect accessory to your bathing suit at the pool, at the beach. Everyone should have one! It’s the latest rage!


  16. Dear Coleen, I am so happy to have found you, your blog and your book! I am an avid fan of Alarna Rose Gray’s blog and found out about you there. Just ordered your book! Thank you!!!


  17. Wow.. just accomplishing what you’ve done so far (writing a book) just leaves me in awe already. I know your book will find its way into many young JA hands.. do schools have “meet the author” days? We used to do that. When I get back from my trip I’ll look at downloading your book and reading it! Loved your sense of humor today!! xx


    1. Thanks Barbara! I just started looking into the idea of local promotion. It’s ironic how blogging and the reach of the internet kind of made me forget about my own backyard for a moment!


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