What Can a Book Fair Do For You?

What can a book fair do for you? There’s very little that they can’t do for you, really. They attract, quite literally, tens of thousands of highly passionate literary aficionados to further the art form that is the book. The London Book Fair alone attracts tens of thousands of attendees from over one hundred countries, and members of the media as well. Book fairs are positively packed with crowds of people determined to find new books to read and authors to follow. The book fair is a unique and unparalleled experience, and your self-publishing book belongs there.

It’s easy to think of book fairs as the stomping ground of the New York Times bestseller list, but they’re also for aspiring self-publishing authors, and the choice to include a book fair or two in your marketing plan may literally change your life … and sell a lot of books! Think about it: your book is a bonafide example of an author designing and creating and publishing exactly what he or she envisioned. Isn’t that exactly the sort of ethic and product that has a home at book fairs? Artistic integrity creates its own gravity, its own magnetic attraction to readers. Fair-goers pick up on authenticity right away!

A book fair revolves around authors and the worlds that they create. People can order whatever they like online — but people still flock to book fairs everywhere around the world. And why? Because they want to participate in the social world of books. They want to meet the people who make books happen.

If you’re worried about having to manage a booth at a book fair alone, here’s a solution which might appeal: Companies like Outskirts Press send representatives to book fairs for you. We sponsor booths to feature self-published books at home and abroad. We pay careful attention to the best ways in which one can section off space and create a warm and welcoming atmosphere out of a fair or exhibition space. We advocate for your book and send all leads for interested buyers directly to you for follow-up.

So, how do you make your book the star of the show? Good news, it’s easy! Log into your Publishing Center at www.outskirtspress.com and click on the Marketing Solutions menu. There, you’ll find a number of individual book fairs, such as Beijing or Frankfurt as well as a combination tour package. We have just the right way to help you take your book global!

Time to Pick the Winner of the ‘Show Us Your Love’ Contest!

Authors have showered Outskirts Press with the warm-fuzzies for weeks now (seriously, we’re blushing) and now it’s time to pick our favorite. We simply can’t decide which of the creative videos they submitted is best, so we’re asking for your opinions. Your votes will decide who wins a brand-new Microsoft Surface Pro in our 7th Annual “Show Us Your Love” social media event and video contest.

The three videos with the most “likes” on the Outskirts Facebook page from among this year’s entries are now up for a public vote to determine the winner. The poll ends Friday, February 23, and the winner will be announced on February 28.

Below are the three finalists. Watch the videos and place your vote. The author whose video earns the most votes will win a brand-new Microsoft Surface Pro!

Chef Jesse Jones “POW! My Life in 40 Feasts”

Peter Tokar “Langley’s RIP”

Jackie Fisher “The Lost Branch”

While there are only three finalists, you can still check out all the videos submitted for the contest on our YouTube Playlist. Let’s just say we have a clever author community! With the social media exposure all entrants have received on Outskirts Press’ Facebook Page, YouTube Channel and Twitter Feed, all participants come out winners.

Place your vote now and subscribe to our blog or check back on February 28 to see who wins.

Computer Specifications:

Features Ambient Light Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Digital Compass, G-sensor, Webcam
Brand Microsoft
ScreenSize 12.3 in
Condition New
Operating System Microsoft Windows
RAM Memory 4 GB
Model SU3-00001
Hard Drive Capacity 128 GB
Manufacturer Part Number SU3-00001
Processor Type Intel Core M3 Processor
Maximum RAM Supported 4 GB
Processor Speed 2.2 GHz
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H) 9.21 x 15.17 x 1.58 Inches

Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Here’s this week’s Featured Book-of-the-Week available now on Amazon.com!


Baby, I’m the Boss of Me: Embracing the Power and Joy of Getting Older

by Ruth Yunker

(4 Stars – 5 Customer Reviews)

Price: $15.95

Ruth Yunker’s “Baby, I’m the Boss of Me: Embracing the Power and Joy of Getting Older” presents a timeless look at growing older that is both funny and heartfelt. Through her own experiences and how she is choosing to navigate this amazing period of her life, the stories she tells show a path of how to get from here to there while savoring every minute.

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Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

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Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Here’s this week’s Featured Book-of-the-Week available now on Amazon.com!


Crimes of Arrogance

by Mitch Engel

(5 Stars – 24 Customer Reviews)

Price: $22.95

Mitch Engel’s “Crimes of Arrogance.” Webster Tremont, the son of a prominent billionaire, shuns his trust funds, wanting to be out of his father’s shadow. After a career as a cop, Webb becomes a successful writer of true crime cases, which are turned into a TV series. But when weekly, prank copycat crimes turn into serious felonies, Webb and the FBI get involved. Have they been manipulated by a dangerous sociopath? Webb uncovers family secrets and learns that wealth and pedigree are no protection against a criminal mastermind.

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Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

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Market Smart: On the Acquisition of High-Quality Book Reviews

When it comes to book reviews for self-publishing authors, much less the acquisition thereof, authors have to prepare themselves to deal with a moving target. There’s simply no one-size-fits-all understanding, much less solution, for your average self-publishing writer, and there’s no rulebook which states that the best ways to get and give reviews are set in stone.

But first, just in case you’re skeptical of the need to acquire reviews of your book, we must answer the question: why are book reviews important in the first place? First of all, the number of reviews you receive on a website like Amazon, paired with its star rating, leverages a lot of weight on new readers. If all you had to go on was two or three lines of text and a star rating when it came to picking out a new kitchen appliance or nonprofit organization to support, you’d pay a lot of attention to what past customers or supporters had to say, wouldn’t you? A book with no reviews, like a fancy gadget that might just make a mess of your kitchen, is often passed over in favor of a “sure thing” … that is, a book others have already confirmed is excellent. Other factors, such as an eye-catching cover design, may play a role. But reviews simply can’t be ignored as the engine of book sales!

And those first reviews are the hardest to get.

This is where things get complicated. There’s no easy answer to the question of how to acquire those first, most difficult reviews. Or rather, there’s a short answer (any way you can!) but it doesn’t provide much in the way of practical advice. Our suggestion is to start small and build from there. Query book bloggers that you follow, and authors that you admire, and of course your friends and family. They’re your built-in audience, so take advantage of them! Just, you know, not too much. You don’t want your reviews to radiate desperation. While there’s no one single right or wrong way to go about querying for reviews, do keep in mind that reciprocity is an important part of the publishing world, especially the world of self-published authors, who have to build digital communities and networks for themselves. It’s a great idea to offer to review another author’s book in exchange for a review of your own; that way, both authors benefit, not to mention avid readers of indie literature!

There are, of course, other reliable places where book reviewers hang out. Amazon’s top reviewers make up one such group, and the best part is, it’s their job to review new products, and they tend to love it! Some may have specific product and even genre preferences, but you should definitely consider turning to them when you’re looking to build your reviewer base. And don’t forget about Goodreads! Dedicated, socially-connected readers gravitate to Goodreads, even while avid book-buyers will head to Amazon, its parent company. Consider hosting a Goodreads giveaway to bolster both the visibility of your book and the number of reviews! Best of all, Outskirts Press offers services which will set up accounts on both Goodreads and Amazon to make this process a whole lot easier!

The best thing you can do for your self-published book is to keep writing. The more books you write and publish, the more linkages you will build between texts, and the larger your circle of influence will grow. In the long run, your book’s visibility will benefit if you put in a little time here and there, and keep working on new ways to give and gain book reviews and boost your sales numbers!

Looking for more information on marketing strategies that might just work for you? Visit us online at www.outskirtspress.com and check out the options available on the Marketing Solutions menu. You can also access your Free Marketing Resource Center by logging into your Publishing Center where you’ll find countless further recommendations to suit your marketing needs!

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Have You Published a Children’s Book? Here’s How to Market It.

Children’s books may just be the purest distillation of self-publishing perfection: they’re beautiful, they have universal appeal to readers of all ages, and they pack an emotional punch which leaves readers hungry for more. But if you’ve recently self-published a children’s book, you’ll already know that marketing your book successfully can still pose some unique challenges, regardless of these qualities. It’s time to put your creative gifts back to work, and to take advantage of your book’s unique place in the self-publishing marketplace. But how? Here are three simple suggestions to get you started.

ONE: Think of your book as an event, not an object.

Children’s books are best enjoyed collectively, aren’t they? Whether we’re talking about a grandparent reading aloud to a pack of children on the couch or a librarian holding forth to a cluster of kids during Story Hour or an educator teaching sight words to a roomful of second graders, children’s books are events, not just physical objects that one can hold in the hand. When it comes to marketing, spend some time early on brainstorming all of the various contexts in which you see your book being enjoyed … and then start planning how you yourself can center an event in each context. And don’t just think analog … digital context matter, too! Think of all those book reviewers on YouTube and those book bloggers on Goodreads who might just love reading your book as part of a book tour.

And look, just holding a book reading isn’t enough to move most parents to open their pocketbooks and deal out the hard cash; they really want to know and be convinced that there’s more to your book than what can be heard or seen in a single reading. Many children’s books out there are, after all, easy to pick up once and never again. So when you think about hosting or running an event, think about how to ensure it’s an engaging one, and find ways to make clear connections to ancillary materials like your book’s back matter, related activities, website material, and educator-friendly resources. The point is to communicate that your book is one worth coming back to, time and time again, and therefore worth investing money in.

TWO: Schools are key, and schools are hard.

If you really want your children’s book to move, you need to find a way to crack open access to the biggest movers and shakers of children’s books in the world: schools. And since the teachers in these schools for the most part rely on units and resources which have been approved or listed by or perhaps even provided by the systems which developed alongside them … which is to say, traditional publishing houses and their marketing teams. So yes, schools are a difficult nut to crack. But the sheer quantity of readers they sustain and cultivate make the effort worthwhile.

How to make a start? If you haven’t already, develop a unit’s worth of materials around your books. Collect activities and further readings, media, and so forth that relates to your children’s book and line it all up, ready to go. That way, when you arrange to visit a classroom or run a workshop for local teachers, you have both credibility as a resource and have made it easy for the teachers to meet state and federal core requirements. Work in some facetime with the school administrators as well; such relationships can establish you as a long-term presence in the area.

THREE: Make hay while the sun shines … and the sun shines around the world!

One of the most underutilized opportunities out there for children’s book authors is the book fair, and there are so many wonderful ones, globally, to choose from! These days, it’s easy to take part, too, as self-publishing companies like Outskirts Press offer global book tour packages designed to get your book in front of and into the hands of untold numbers, or individual book fair submission applications such as that to the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, which is the highest class event a children’s book author could wish for.

If you’re looking to market your children’s book, there’s never a better time than now to inquire. Visit us online at www.outskirtspress.com and check out our Marketing Solutions menu. You can also access our wonderful Free Marketing Resource Center where you’ll find countless further recommendations to suit your marketing needs!

To see our staff picks of amazing children’s books from many of our authors, visit our Pinterest page by clicking here.

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Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Here’s this week’s Featured Book-of-the-Week available now on Amazon.com!


Children’s Limericks From A to Z

by Chris Longfellow, Illustrated by Jay Longfellow

(5 Stars – 4 Customer Reviews)

Price: $11.95

Chris Longfellow’s “Children’s Limericks From A to Z.” It’s okay to have fun and be silly as a child! This book will develop a child’s sense of humor. The limericks are fun to read and the illustrations are stunning.

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Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

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