Sunday, September 28, 2008

Marketing Books

Here's an observation. Last month, when I asked folks what their favorite books on writing were, I received a large number of responses. This month, when I asked about favorite books on marketing, I received a handful. Hmm...I think this reflects what many writer feel (this one included)--that they LOVE writing and HATE marketing.

With that in mind, here is a list of some recommended books on marketing.

1001 Ways to Market Your Book by John Kremer
An Author's Guide to Children's Book Promotion by Susan Salzman Raab
The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won't by Carolyn Howard-Johnson
The Complete Guide to Book Publicity by Jodee Blanco
The Shy Writer by C. Hope Clark
Guerrilla Marketing for Writers by Jay Conrad Levinson, Rick Frishman and Michael Larsen
Publicize Your Book! by Jacqueline Deval
The Children’s Writer’s & Illustrators Market Guide by Alice Pope.
It’s a Bunny Eat Bunny World by Olga Litowinsky
Plug Your Book! by Steve Weber.
Any of the marketing books by Seth Godin

Friday, September 26, 2008

Authors & Illustrators Stand Together for Children

Over one thousand authors and illustrators (and counting) taking a stand.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Recommended Books on Marketing

If you recall, last month I asked folks about their favorite books on the craft of writing, with the promise that I'd ask about marketing books at a later date (because like with our work, we need to focus on the craft before we even think about marketing).

Well, it's later. Not a lot, but enough to where I'm ready to ask the question: What's your favorite book on marketing?

Here are some of my favorites:

The Children's Writer's & Illustrators Market Guide (okay, that was a no brainer) by Alice Pope.
It's a Bunny Eat Bunny World by Olga Litowinsky.
Plug Your Book! by Steve Weber.

Okay, I told you mine. Now, what's yours?

Friday, September 19, 2008

Arrrr! It's Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Ahoy, me buckoos, once again it's Talk Like a Pirate Day! So pull out yer pirate dictionaries and be ready to gab in pirate-speak or walk the plank! Need a little sword tip to move ye forward? Try these pirate puns on fer size:

What did the pirate's dog say?
What did the pirate do when it rained for forty days and forty nights?
He built an arrrrrk.
What's a pirate's favorite subject in school?
Really, ye seadogs, ye must pull out the Chase Calendar of Events and discover more treasures of fun worth celebrating!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New CYBILS Award Category!

The CYBILS (Children's and Young Adult Bloggers' Literary Award) has added a new category to their list of contest genres: Easy Readers. Yea for easys!!! I love seeing easy readers added to the contest. I've always said it's the most overlooked genre in children's literature and this is another step in recognizing their significance. And guess what? I'm a judge for this year's contest! Yowza! I'm so looking forward to reviewing the finalists and working with the other judges.

If you want to read more about the CYBILS, click here. Nominations begin Oct. 1, so start thinking about your favorite books of 2008 so you can nominate them.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Book Trailers, Etc.

The ladies (that would be Laura Purdie Salas and Fiona Bayrock) over at Bubble Stampede ran a nice post today about children's book trailers. I absolutely delighted that they mentioned Blackberry Banquet's trailer, amongst others. And a little bird told me that they're going to do a follow-up post about creating book trailers too, so be sure to look for that upcoming post.

On the note of making book trailers, if you're interested in making your own, please feel free to read my previous post on how to create your own book trailer. If you're just too busy or don't feel you have the creative knack to undertake such a project, my writing buddy Tina Nichols Coury can help you out. You can check out a sample of her most recent work on her website by clicking here.

Happy trailer-ing!

Saturday, September 13, 2008


Pint-sized interviews that leave you smiling.
DAN HANNA lives high in the treetops of the Brazilian Rain Forest where he illustrates (and attempts to write) children's picture books. He periodically lowers his work to a devoted monkey-like companion who then submits it to various editors throughout the world. His first book, THE POUT-POUT FISH (Farrar, Straus & Giroux) was launched in March 2008.
Mr. Hanna doesn't have any children of his own but he does have a BOYish grin, he's YOUNG at heart, has CHILDish tastes and two KIDney stones.

How does it feel to have your first book (and author Deborah Diesen's first book) be on the NY Times Bestseller's list for children's books? Did you ever imagine it would be this successful?
It feels like a hot air balloon ride. But not like one of those rides where the basket catches on fire or the balloon hits a power line or something.

My imagination was all over the place. At the low end, I imagined it showing up in the 99 cent stores. At the high end, I imagined it becoming the basis for a world-wide religion where true believers would genetically alter themselves to resemble characters in the book. So getting on the NY Time's List was right about in the middle.

I'm just kidding of course. It was like a dream and it never occurred to me as a possibility. I still don't understand how it could have happened. I think maybe my fairy godmother went around buying tons of books and now she has about a zillion copies in her fairy garage.

You're a wonderful illustrator with an extensive background in animation; now that you've illustrated your first picture book, do you have any advice for aspiring picture book writers? How about aspiring illustrators? (okay, that's really two questions, but I have to give equal time to each craft :-)
Buy one thousand parrots and place them in a room with a looped recording saying something like: "Dan Hanna can sure draw fish!" Then release the parrots, using a helicopter, over each of the major publishing houses. When the editors leave for lunch they'll hear the parrots in the trees screeching "Aaaaccck, Dan Hanna can sure draw fish!" Now I know this scheme seems rather elaborate, but it worked for me.

Deborah and I were very fortunate to be included in Alice Pope's 2009 edition of CWIM (Children's Writer's & Illustrator's Market). In my interview there's an extensive list of equally dubious "how to get published" advice.

What’s your favorite children’s joke?

My favorite is actually the "Interrupting Cow" joke but somebody [Jay Asher] already - MOO!

Q: Why doesn't anyone play poker on the Serengeti?

A: Because there's too many cheetahs.

Very funny! Thanks, Dan!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Get Out and Vote: For Blackberry Banquet!

Can't wait til November to vote? Then head on over to the New Covey Book Trailer Awards and cast your vote for the Blackberry Banquet book trailer! It's entry #3, so you'll have to scroll down a bit (and check out some of the other "steamy" looking trailers--nice work!).

My sweet little Blackberry trailer definitely is different, but I don't think anyone could find a juicier pick!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Sound Advice from A Real, Live Publicist

Sara Dobie, publicist for Sylvan Dell Publishing, was a guest blogger last week for All Book Marketing. Sara gave authors some sound advice on how to promote books and generate buzz about its release. If you dig even further into the site, you'll also find lots of other good information and tips on book promotion. Check it out!