Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Welcome Guest Author Katherine Grey

I'm pleased to welcome fellow Wild Rose Press author Katherine Grey. Katherine's writing about a subject that challenges authors today - promotion. Welcome, Katherine!

I’m pretty technologically inept. I don’t say that as an excuse or as something to brag about, but as the truth.  I recently moved from the Stone Age by investing in a DVD player (even though my brother advised a blue ray player would be more sensible) after refusing to give up my VHS player because I knew how to use that.  I’ve had a smartphone for all of 6 months and still have to refer to the directions to access my voice mail.  Thankfully, I don’t get very many messages.  But I digress…

When I first realized all that promoting my debut novel last summer would entail I was more than a little intimidated.   I was told to get on Facebook (yes, I was one of 10 people on the planet who wasn’t on it), to start a blog, get a website, open a Twitter account, join Triberr if asked, join GoodReads, hold contests, guest blog as often as possible, get reviews of my book, buy advertisements, put together a trailer for the book, well the list goes on and on.

Thankfully, a friend who was on Facebook took pity on me and helped me set up a page where I could have “friends” and a fan page where people could “like” me.  I thought if people wanted to be my friend, they would already like me but she patiently explained the difference between the two pages.  I finally felt comfortable enough to post things on my own without her on the other end of the phone and Facebook changed to the Timeline format.  Thankfully, it wasn’t a huge transition but I will admit I waited to the last possible minute to change over from the old format. 

With the gracious and very patient help of my fellow authors on The Wild Rose Press author loop, I mastered setting up a blog and posting regularly along with joining GoodReads, though I’m sure I’m not as active as I should be on it, and guest blogging on other blogs.

I haven’t gotten a website yet or bought any advertisements.  I wouldn’t know the first thing about setting up a website much less maintaining it and I have the excuse that paying for the initial set up and monthly maintenance fees are currently outside my budget.  I’ve heard advertisements don’t work, but I’ve also heard they do, so for the time being I’m abstaining.

I haven’t done a trailer for my book. Just the thought even attempting it sends me into a panic. I wouldn’t know where to start much less how to put one together so for now, that’s a no go too.   I haven’t been asked to join Triberr (Thank Goodness) so I have a legitimate excuse for not being on that.  It could be that you have to have a Twitter account that I haven’t been asked. (Shh..I’ll tell you a secret…I asked my nephew to set up a Twitter account for me a few weeks ago but haven’t done anything with it. I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do with it.  I have a few followers who somehow found me but I haven’t told anyone I have a Twitter account yet. Maybe once I figure out what I’m doing, I will.)

But I have to say in the approximately 8 months since my novel, Impetuous, was released that I’ve been doing promotion, I’ve enjoyed most of it…once I got over the anxiety of not knowing what the heck I’m doing.  I like learning about different authors, their processes, and such. I like connecting with other people who love books and reading as much as I do.  I’ve also liked learning all these new things, much to my surprise.

And just when I was feeling comfortable talking about that first book, my novella, The Muse, was released on May 30th so I get to start doing the promotional thing all over again.  They say practice makes perfect, so now I have the chance to find out if that old adage is true.

Below is the blurb for The Muse and a short excerpt. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did writing it.

Noted poet Blaine Hobson counts the Prince Regent among his patrons. But ever since the socialite he wished to marry took her life, he has been unable to compose a single line of poetry. With a sonnet commissioned by the Regent due in a few weeks, Blaine spends his time alternating between trying to write...and wishing he had the courage to join his beloved in the grave.

Raised in an orphanage with her sister, seamstress Emma Tompkins lives with the guilt of her sibling’s death. Accidentally finding a suicide note penned by Blaine, she resolves to keep him alive at all costs. Vigilant, she returns each day, pushing her way into his home--and losing her heart.

Can Blaine forget his beloved and return the affections of the seamstress? Or once finished with his work, will he cast Emma out of his life forever?


“You’re alive.” The words burst forth with such a
sense of relief, it was all Emma Tompkins could do
not to reach out and touch the man in front of her
just to be certain.

He scowled and stepped back.

“I’m so glad I’m not too late.”

“What are you talking about?” He glanced up
and down her person and seemed to find her
wanting, but Emma didn’t care in the slightest.

“Who the hell are you?”

Ordinarily, she would have been beyond
insulted, but to know she wasn’t too late, not this
time, she ignored his surly disposition. “Emma.
Emma Tompkins.” She dropped into a quick curtsey,
not certain of the proper protocol. Her social circle
included servants, shopkeepers, and the like, not
well-known poets favored by the Prince Regent.

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  1. Hi Katherine! Congrats on your 2nd release...very exciting.

    As for the promotion, it's a bit overwhelming but the more I visited other blogs and tweeted, facebooked and joined goodreads, the more I realized I have a bit of a social media addiction...lol. I've met some wonderful people and I do highly recommend twitter. Just get on there and join conversations and post little snippets of what you're doing. It does get easier.


    1. Thanks for the advice, Christine. I think Twitter scares me more than anything else. I'm not sure I'll be able to say anything in less than 140 characters. I tend to be wordy at times. I have to admit I do enjoy facebook when I was sure I wouldn't.

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you, Isabella. I'm glad you stopped by.

  3. I'm like you with social media. I joined Twitter about six months ago and haven't been back in five months. Must do that today. Congrats1 on the new release. Enjoyed the excerpt very much. : )

    1. Hi Robena, It's good to know I'm not the only person with a Twitter account who isn't sure what to do with it. LOL. I'm glad you liked the excerpt and thanks for the good wishes.

  4. The muse sounds like something different and I love different. Good luck and congratulations on the second contract.

    1. It was different from what I've written before as I haven't written a novella before. I learned a lot from the process. Thanks for stopping by. :o)

  5. I empathise with everything you've just mentioned above, Katherine. Last year I was in the same boat ie needed to 'join' everything on the promoting gravy train. I still have to 'do' twitter, and no doubt plenty of others, and have yet to see it make any difference to sales...but what the heck. What I've been doing has been another form of writing, and I feel I'm getting there. Best Wishes with your novella, it sounds great!

    1. Hi Nancy,

      I tell myself all the promoting helps get my name out there. I only promote on loops I belong to, blogs I guest on, and facebook so I'm not really sure if my name is getting out to people who aren't already familiar with me. But I figure it can't hurt.

  6. Lovely excerpt, Katherine! I love the idea of a hero who is a poet. Learning how and where to promote is an interesting process. I think you're right, the more you do it the more comfortable you get with putting yourself out there!

    1. Hi Karen,

      I'm terrible in crowds and am a pretty shy person so the biggest hurdle for me is putting myself out there and hoping I look like I know what I'm doing. :o) I'm glad you liked the excerpt. I wasn't too sure if having Blaine be a poet was a good thing, but so far I've only gotten positive feedback on his profession.

  7. Can't help with promotion ideas. I do what you do and don't see a lot of results. Where's that magic bullet? LOL Best of luck with your new release.

    1. Hi Jannine,
      I wish I knew the magic bullet too. Thanks for the good wishes and for stopping by. :o)

  8. Thanks, Katherine, for stopping by today! I enjoyed your post. Social media can seem a bit overwhelming at times.


    1. Thank you for hosting me. I had a great time. And it was nice to know I'm not the only person who feels a bit out of their element.

  9. Congrats with your release, Katherine! I look forward to checking it out! Don't feel alone about promotion. I'm definitely not that great with it either.

    1. Melissa,
      I'm finding a lot of writers feel they don't have a good handle on promotion, but are willing to share what they do or have tried and if it works/worked for them. Thanks for the congrats. I hope you enjoy The Muse. Thanks for dropping by. :o)

  10. I was a little throw back too! Which is why I tell myself one step at a time. I finally have a Goodreads author page, now I need to figure out what to do with it! Good luck!

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