Panic Time

Gack! I just found out my book will be released in ebook and print on January 10th. I knew it would be sometime in early 2018 but was hoping for February at the earliest. My first book didn’t come out until almost 18 months after I accepted the offer. My last book with this publisher was scheduled three months ahead. But now, because so many writers drag out the editing process, my publisher doesn’t schedule release dates until the book is almost ready to go.

So, I have six weeks to send out review copies, write tweets, pick out excerpts, update my website, figure out how to send out a newsletter, write blog posts and promo copy, book a blog/review tour, sign up for the PAL mailer and organize advertising. And that’s just the things that come to mind immediately.

Oh, and there’s the little matter of the holidays in between now and then. Which at my house is a big deal, as my husband loves Christmas and we usually go all out. And we won’t even talk about the fact that I need to keep writing the next book in the series or I’ll never finish it and any following I’ve built with this book will go to waste.

What’s a person to do? Make lists, I guess, and then start working on my least favorite part of being an author. I’ve always hated promotion. It seems unnatural, awkward and downright embarrassing. I was raised in a social culture where it was rude to boast, or even draw attention to yourself. I was trained to deflect compliments and always be self-deprecating. And being female, the admonitions were even more intense. It was considered a tiny bit more acceptable for a man to promote himself. But a woman? No way.

The only hope for me is to pretend I’m promoting someone else. And I am. I’m promoting my hero and heroine. Especially my heroine. Because she is strong and determined and willing to break all the rules. She refuses to be modest and demure and biddable and everything that society in her time period said was the only way for a woman to be. (Funny how little things have changed in 800 years.) The book is named for her: Lady of Steel. She’s willing to defy all the conventions and risk everything because she’s doing it all for her son, whom she loves more than anything in the world. And that’s what I need to tell myself: I’m doing this all for my book, which I slaved away at for over a year (or actually twenty, as I first came up with the idea for the story that many years ago). For my heroine and hero and my story, that I still love, even after the tenth rewrite and the fourth time proofreading.

OK. Got it. My pep talk worked. Sort of. Now to finish this blog post and start on that list.

Happy holidays, everyone!

Mary Gillgannon
Mary Gillgannon writes romance novels set in the Dark Ages, medieval, and English Regency time periods and fantasy and historical novels with Celtic influences. Her books have been published in Russia, China, the Netherlands, and Germany. Raised in the Midwest, she now lives in Wyoming and works at a public library. She is married and has two grown children. When not working or writing, she enjoys gardening, traveling, and reading, of course! More about Mary on her website.

21 thoughts on “Panic Time

  1. Congrats! I’m right there with you with my new release last Wednesday. Self-promo is hard by we gotta do it. Best of luck with your upcoming release. Lets schedule a visit to my Author’s Secrets blog for your new book. January is almost wide open at this time.

  2. You can do it! Making a list of priorities is so important for focus, and you have that. Check off one item every day, and you’ll get there. I’m happy for you, Mary! Hugs!

  3. I think every published author can empathize with you over promotion in general and a new release specifically. I once signed onto eight guest blog posts at release time. NEVER do that again! Id say get it out on Facebook and Twitter and author loops–maybe a local signing or two and let it take on a life of its own. Good luck!

  4. Best of luck with your new release, Mary! Self-promotion is hard…I suspect most writers are introverted by nature, I know I am, and it does feel uncomfortable to blow your own horn! I just “fake it ’til I make it”, when I have to!
    Happy holidays to you and your family!
    : )

  5. That’s exciting, Mary, even if a bit alarming. But then, I know way ahead when my book is coming out, and I still procrastinate on some parts of that promo business. I know you’ll bring it all together and have a stunning launch and great sales.

  6. Wow! Pretty exciting, and a major rush. January is coming fast. I enjoyed your Post. You described the angst of being a published author well. I also hate promotion…just doesn’t feel right. Best of luck with your upcoming release.

  7. Yes, to the lists, Mary! It’s how I keep sane, haha! And congratulations! This is exciting! I’m right there cheering you on, so let me know if you need anything. Self-promo is all part of the business. If we don’t do it, no one else will.

  8. Congratulations, Mary! In an earlier life, I rather enjoyed the hustle of promotion around release time. Now I realize the real me just wants to hide in my cave and write. I’ll check out your blog posts to see how it goes. I detest blogging, though I love forum-like formats, such as Facebook, etc. Go figure. Good luck, my friend!

    • Thanks, Deb. I think you’ve always been great at promotion. But it seems harder than ever these days. Don’t look for my blog until I get something new up. I have neglected pretty much everything but FB for the last year. But I’m going to get back into the swing of things, I am, I am.
      Good to hear from you.

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