Welcome to Following the Whispers blog
Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.
“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf
“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Shyness and Self-Promotion
Once a month, Page One allows self-published authors to set up a table (for free) and sell their books. Although I hosted my book launch there in February, this was the first time I went to this event. There were two other authors there, both of whom had been doing this for three years.
"Is it worth it," I asked Jim, a retired search and rescue volunteer who has written a novel about his adventures.
"I guess I have averaged about a 1/3 of a book a month in sales over the three years," Jim said.
Gulp. We sat. Jim accosted every single person who entered the bookstore with, "Hi there. We're local authors peddling our wares. Want to take a look?"
I wanted to crawl under the table. I can easily speak with people if they come up of their own accord and pick up a book. But I cannot, will not, do not want to try to stop them on their way to whatever they came in for. This made me realize that I am the same way at parties and group gatherings. I do not initiate conversations, although I am perfectly fine if someone comes up to me and starts talking.
How does this affect me regarding self-promotion for my book? It means I won't be going to Page One's monthly event any time soon. It's a waste of time and energy. I will, however, begin to set up speaking engagements at associations relating to the issues in my book. I will begin writing more articles and essays pertaining to topics covered in the memoir. And I will continue the internet marketing that is actually working, one book at a time.
My epiphany around being shy and self-promoting is that the process must be organic for me to continue doing it, playing to my strengths and avoiding things that highlight my weaknesses.