As those of you who follow my writing, publishing, and marketing journeys know, I’m always looking for gigs where I can speak and sell my books. When people who want to publish a book ask me the best way to market, my answer is simple: Develop some kind of program and offer it to groups.
Sometimes the offers come my way, other times I have to fill out forms and apply (such is the case with juried author fairs) and still other times, I throw a bunch of ideas on the wall – and see what, if anything, sticks.
Sometimes I think of it as planting seeds. Other times it’s casting lines in the water and seeing if there’s a bite. Or perhaps I use another cliché such as placing many irons in the fire. You get the idea.
While several stops remain on the 2016 calendar, lately I’ve been wondering when and where the first date might go up on the new one. Yes, on the literal, new calendar.
Friend Gay and I share a tradition of exchanging gifts during our summer girlfriend getaways. Last month Gay bought me something that will remind me of her every day during 2017. It’s a beautiful paper planner / calendar. The cover is pink with big white flowers that sure enough resemble peonies, our state flower. It’s bigger than a paperback novel with a hard cover, plenty of blank pages for notes and a pocket in the back. It will be my constant companion.
And this week, one of the fishing lines got a tug, and I landed my first book-related event for 2017. The ironic thing was that when I went to initiate the planner with the assignment, the pink ribbon that marks one’s place was randomly inserted into that very week. Must have been meant to be.
I’m old-school about my planning. Even Brian has moved on to a paperless display of time and records his calendar stops on his cell phone. I’m not even close to doing that. At least not until 2018, and I imagine well beyond that.
Paper calendars from the last two years are at my side in a basket by this writing chair for easy access. It’s surprising how often I reference them for a date, contact name and number of a previous program. I could probably do this on a small cell phone. But this works. It works just great, in fact.
Usually I don’t get a new calendar until late fall. It’s a treat to have 2017 at my fingertips now. Thanks Gay. You know me so well. You know what I like. Is it too soon to set a date for next summer’s fun? I've pretty much got a blank calendar just waiting to be filled.