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Guys, I have to post today about the book. I have to.
Y’all, it is a heckuva thing, to write a book.
Once the book was out there, with an actual cover and pages, and sitting on shelves in bookstores, and libraries, it was like I had a baby, and then wrapped it up, set it on a bookshelf, slapped an isbn sticker on its adorable soft little bum, and walked away.
I don’t even have any books in my house anymore. I kept giving them to people. Authors get a box of books (I think I got about 15) to do whatever they like with. I kinda considered throwing all fifteen of them on my bed and rolling around in them with glee like that money scene from Indecent Proposal, but you know? That’s a movie from the 90’s* and nobody remembers it. Also, rolling around on a book is uncomfortable. I know this because there is always, ALWAYS at least one book nesting in my bed anyhow (housekeeping challenged) and the other night I rolled over onto A Prayer For Owen Meany and bruised my spleen.
Also, this might rumple with the book cover. As I am a tidy author, there shall be no rolling.
Here is what happened recently about this book:
I had a friend inform me about amazon. It’s this place on the internets where people buy stuff? Anyhow, my sweet little book is on there, and it had some reviews.
And by some I mean a nice number. Less than twenty. More than ten. Still ok. I didn’t much mind. I knew people were reading it, liking it. I knew also that most readers were moms, saddled with small children probably. The likelihood that she was going to set down the small cherub stickily attached to her side and try to post a review of Bottled the next time she has some time to herself was pretty small. If she was like me, she would use that time to go the bathroom and take a nap. Maybe not at the same time.
But then, just recently, another friend told me: “You need 50 reviews. If you get 50, your book will be an ‘also liked’.”
Guys. Wait. What?
This is how I do marketing, by the way. The majority of the time, my book selling moments are paired with me saying, inevitably, “Now, wait. What?”
Bewilderment. It’s part of my platform.
The “also likes”? You know them, I bet. Whenever I am buying, say, a tassled gladiator sandal, and amazon, oh so cleverly suggests that a RED leather tasseled gladiator sandal might also be something I like, I often find myself nodding and just feeling all warm and fuzzy about Amazon.
“Yes. Why, I DO like those? How did you know, Amazon? You really get me!”
“It’s like we’re *crosses fingers* like this.”
When I was researching other books to write my book proposal, the “also likes” saved me. It’s how I found a small army of books about drinking, about moms drinking, about recovery.
And it’s also where I didn’t find something: Laughter.
When the publisher, Central Recovery Press, asked me to write the book they asked, “Will you write about the harrowing, painful, and totally life-altering experience of being a mom in recovery. But will you, you know, make it funny?”
Ah, CRP. You also get me. It’s like we’re *crosses fingers again* like this.
I wrote the book. I slaved for nine months (For real. A book baby.) and then, WHAMMO, it arrived. Big celebration. Cigars. Champagne (not really, that would be dumb). And along with it?
Its evil twin, Marketing.
So now the book is out there. And evidently Amazon would like suitable proof. I really had no idea how to do this, so I took it on, with the same enthusiasm as a mom trying to get volunteers for the next Fun Fair. I pestered those that I knew had bought the book. You poor people, if you had actually been kind enough to send me a pic of you reading Bottled, with a cup of tea, in your cozy chair, I was coming to find you. I went all Liam Neeson on the situation. Sorry.
I tweeted. I messaged. I emailed. I texted.
I became the Most Annoying Person in the World.
And nearly** every time, here was the response: “Sure! I would love to!”
Those guys. They were the best. Simply the best. It’s like they really got me. We were *crosses fingers yet again* like this.
It’s good, yes, to be “also liked.” But do you know what all of this taught me?
Gratitude. People are so willing to help. And with the conversations that happened all day long, they reminded me, again and again, about friendship, willingness, generosity, and time. It blessed me completely. Completely.
Thank you. I “also like” you too. Did you know that?
We’re like this.
*Am I the only one who thinks the 90’s was just about a couple years ago? It’s not The 90’s. It was just, you know, a while back. Weird.
** True story. My friend, who shall remain unnamed but is My Pastor’s Wife, said: “Dana. I can’t review it. I actually have not read it yet. I am so sorry.”
And I responded something like: “That’s ok. Just lie. Really. I think. Oh. Wait. No, that would be bad.”
She didn’t respond but I am sure she prayed for me, which is good because at that point I think I had gotten a tad crazy.
Marketing. It can snap you like a twig.