I have learned that just having a Marketing Plan to promote my Beyond mystery books (and following it, even) is not always the most lucrative way to do it. The late great John Lennon was right when he said “Life is what happens to you when you are busy making other plans.” And so it has been happening with me lately.
In late July I was in the thatchannel.com studio, or rather the main character, PI Dana Bowman, in my Beyond mystery books was being interviewed on the weekly Liquid Lunch show. Three people interviewed Dana – the show’s host, Hugh Reilly and two authors – Jen Frankel (genre fiction) and Dave Boyle (literary fiction). Both Jen and Dave passed along to me a couple of places to do author presentations. And Dave even took it one step further – getting it in motion. This one is that joint presentation literary author Michael Robert Dyet (author of the short story collection Hunting Muskie) and I do – The War Between Mystery Fiction and Literary Fiction. After much to-ing and fro-ing on my part with Dave and the librarian, Michael and I are now scheduled to do our presentation at the Annette Street Library branch in the west end of Toronto, 6.30 p.m., Tuesday, October 23. And we can bring book copies to sell. If you want to see some photos from this presentation we did the end of June at the S. Walter Stewart library branch, visit my website here.
Jen suggested an east end Toronto advertising company that has author readings and emailed me the info afterwards. I still have to follow-up on that one.
Perhaps the most serendipitous one is with my neighbour, Bob. Bob is a retiree who with his wife, Norma Jean, now collects wine and pop bottles and donates the money he gets for them to local kids’ sports leagues for their uniforms and equipment. So he gets my few empty wine bottles when he comes by with his buggy. We also chat then. A month or so ago he told me about another neighbour who would be doing a cable TV show interviewing local people doing interesting unusual things and he was going to be a guest. So, I piped in about being a published mystery author and he jumped in and asked questions about that. Turns out he and his wife are big mystery fiction readers and have a huge collection of books. He asked me about mine and where they could get copies.
So, since then he has bought a copy of all three of the Beyond books from me – this month. The local TV show hasn’t started yet, but who knows…
And Monday some of my cousins came to visit Toronto for the day. We are all avid gardeners so went to the Toronto Botanical Gardens and then came back to my place to see my garden. Then we went to dinner at a local restaurant. It was there that I mentioned Beyond Faith – as they hadn’t been able to come to the Book launch for it last fall. Two of them who are big mystery readers wanted to buy a copy, so it was back to my place for them to do so before they headed for home.
That’s five Beyond books sold this month that was not part of my marketing plan.
Sometimes it is good to give serendipity a chance.
Hey, we writers have story ideas come to us from wherever. Why not let book sales come to us some of the time?
The only thing we have to do is mention our books unless like with the Liquid Lunch show the info is already part of what is going on.
And if you want to find out about the upcoming (so far) Beyond gigs go here and scroll down and a workshop I’m teaching called “Memoir as Creative Nonfiction” – which has nothing do with mystery writing, go here.
I’m not the “M and M” lady for nothing (and I don’t mean those scrumptious chocolate and peanut butter candies, but Mystery and Memoir – that’s what I write)
And here’s the link to that Liquid Lunch segment where Dana Bowman appeared. thatchannel.com does have it on its website, but this You Tube link is quicker.