Saviors

The Power of the Live Author

By Ian Girdley | Photo by Jeremy Gotwals |  Saviors , a Novel by Matt Seidel, Launch party

By Ian Girdley | Photo by Jeremy Gotwals | Saviors, a Novel by Matt Seidel, Launch party

There are many facets to marketing a book and building your platform as an author (i.e. gaining an audience over a variety of media).  There are also a lot of articles, blogs, and experts telling you how to market correctly and which facets to put your energy into.  It seems that one of the most overlooked (or abandoned) practices for authors are live events.  That is, an author engaging an audience through a reading, signing, and/or speaking engagement.  A launch party is a great way to kick things off but continuing to hold live reading and signing events will perpetuate the following positive results for new and veteran authors alike.

Add Value to Your Book

Just as an album signed by its band becomes more valuable, so does a book signed by its author.  Readers that receive a signed copy of a book are more likely to recommend books throughout their sphere of influence, leave an online review for the book, or post the book to social media sites.  There are even ways to encourage your readers to do this when meeting them face to face.  Too many authors tell me that they don’t want to schlep their book, as if it is somehow beneath them.  It was not beneath successful authors like John Grisham and Louise Hay, among others, who both started out this way.  Remember that selling is marketing.  Every signed copy that lands into someone’s hand is another person that can tell others about your book. 

Engage and Energize Your Audience Directly

Center, Author Matt Seidel. Group holding the new release of his thriller novel, Saviors. Holon Publishing "Wine & Sign" event from early 2014. 

Center, Author Matt Seidel. Group holding the new release of his thriller novel, Saviors. Holon Publishing "Wine & Sign" event from early 2014. 

Beyond getting a signed copy in their hands, performing live and being able to speak with and shake hands with your audience makes them more engaged in your book and in you as an author.  This is the reason why politicians travel on a campaign to give stump speeches instead of simply airing commercials, doing interviews, and reaching out on social media.  It lets you get to know your audience and them to get to know you, to make a personal connection.  People buy products from people they like and they suggests books by authors they like.  Not only will you have made a personal connection, but you have a chance to ask your audience face to face to leave a review on Amazon, follow your blog and social media sites, or post your book on their Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or other social media site.  Even a small reading or book club can turn out to be a very intimate event and lead to some of your most ardent reader-promoters. 

Rise Above the Internet Noise

The bad news is that there are more authors than ever trying to promote their books.  The good news is that a vast majority of these authors are trying to promote solely by means of the internet.  This kind of competition makes it even more difficult to get noticed online, but holding live events puts you into a unique class of author.  Not only are live events a great way to seed your social media following by reaching fans through a noiseless medium, but it can add content about you are your book to the online world.  Live events give not only you, as the author, but your audience something to post about online beyond a review of the book, excerpt from the book, or summary of the book.  It is refreshing to read about an author having a great time with fans instead of another thinly guised plea for you to buy and promote their book.  It is a great way to supplement your online efforts with additional advocates and unique news content.

Give the Media Something to Report About

Your book is out, you’ve sent out a press release about its availability to every newspaper and online news source in the world, but months later there is nothing new to excite the media masses.  What to do?  Though a book signing or author reading won’t make the front page of the New York Times, or much of a splash in any large city, it can garner attention in smaller communities with smaller newspapers.  Not only can you get exposure in these smaller towns and cities, with a crowd that can become even more excited about this event that is more rare, more special to them, but most publications (even small town newspapers) post online now.  This will help your online clout and give your book additional Google listings when it is searched.

Make More Money

While bookstores are the go-to place authors think of when they want to launch their book or have a signing, it isn’t necessarily the most effective and certainly isn’t the most profitable.  We will cover this more in an upcoming article, “The Best Place to Hold a Book Signing”.  One of the greatest benefits to having live signing events (outside of bookstores) is that it gives you the chance to become your own bookseller.  This means that you make the lion’s share of the profit of the book because you don’t have a distributor or bookseller taking a huge discount—this portion goes back into your pocket.  This is especially great for self-published authors who are trying to not only gain an audience but recoup the costs of publishing their book.  If you do not want to appear like you are schlepping your book or seem like a salesman more than an author, have a friend or family member sell copies of your book at one table while you greet readers and sign books at a second table.

Holon Author Matt Seidel signs latest book "Saviors" during Wine & Sign Event

Holon Author Matt Seidel signs latest book "Saviors" during Wine & Sign Event

Holon author Matt Siedel signs latest book ‘Saviors’ during Wine & Sign event  
By Jaclyn Lansbery

Holon author Matt Siedel promoted his first published book “Saviors” during a Wine & Sign event at Blueline Creative Co-Op and Studio on Jan. 17. The book is also Siedel’s eighth novel, and was funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign in April 2013. 

"Saviors" Kickstarter reaches 124% In first week with 50 backers - Now "Stretching" for Stretch Goals

By Holon New Media Staff, Brandon Cook

Holon author Matt Seidel launches Kickstarter campaign for novel “Saviors”

Just over three days ago, Holon Publishing began crowd funding to publish and distribute Bloomington author Matt Seidel’s psychological thriller, “Saviors.” The novel, Seidel’s eighth though his first published, explores themes of morality, taking as one of its protagonists a serial killer, Tobias, who views the murders that he commits as the execution of a divine justice.

The project’s goal of $1500 was met in a little less than two days.

Since then, “Saviors” has earned a total of $1860 and 124%, funds that could lead to a high-end mock trailer for the book, promotional events, and a graphic novel. While these additional projects may sound a bit ambitious for a book that only recently received the go-ahead, they and its enthusiastic Kickstarter response bear testament to the power and innovation of “Saviors’” character and narrative.

Emerging Author Matt Seidel says that he will make the first chapter of his book LIVE before print if the Kickstarter reaches $2,500

Emerging Author Matt Seidel says that he will make the first chapter of his book LIVE before print if the Kickstarter reaches $2,500

Rather than use Tobias as the figure of a mystery novel: the genre in which serial killers feel most at home, Seidel chooses to write a moral fiction that challenges the reader’s basic concepts of good and evil.

Complicating these notions further is the character of Emily, a young woman in the middle of a quarter-life crisis who is, for all intents and purposes, normal. It is during this time that she meets Tobias: “everything that she needs,” Seidel explains in his Kickstarter video.

At this moment, most other writers would keep Emily ignorant of Tobias’s dark habits, suspending the reader in dramatic irony. But Seidel is not most other writers. Emily remains with Tobias, her savior, though, as the author said with a cheeky wave of the hand,  “this creates complications.” As if.

Though its premise echoes vaguely that of TV’s Dexter, Seidel’s narrative is not gore and flash-bang so much as it is a real exploration of Tobias’s tormented condition. Channeling his hero, Dostoyevsky, Seidel develops Emily and Tobias’s relationship alongside the concept of sin and the delusion of goodness, touching on philosophy and religion while still providing engaging narrative.

“Saviors,” the exciting debut for an up-and-coming talent, marks also Holon’s most ambitious approach to date in creating the writer’s community, that is, a community based around each individual writer, rather than the writers as a collective. With each additional goal of Seidel’s Kickstarter campaign ($2500, $3500, and $5000) leading to bigger and bigger promotions, Holon endeavors to both strengthen its relationship with the author and to build an even greater audience for his work.

Stay tuned to hear more exciting updates about Matt Seidel’s “Saviors!"

Click here to contribute to this Kickstarter and pre-order your copy of "Saviors": 
http://kck.st/ZyOdXF

Brandon Cook is the editor of the Live Buzz and a new media journalist with Holon Publishing
http://www.idsnews.com/blogs/livebuzz/
 http://holonpublishing.com/