The Ripple Effect – Marketing your novel – a personal experience

The Ripple Effect

You never know where or how far the ripples will reach when you drop a stone in a pool and

I make no apology for using this analogy, even though it’s a bit of a cliché.

A good friend, ex publisher and bookshop owner once said on hearing that my first novel ‘Riduna’ had been published, ‘Now your hard work begins.’ He was not referring to starting the next novel and since I’d sighed with relief when the proof reading and editing phase was finally over, which I considered the hardest work of all, I asked him what he meant.

‘You need to get out there, talk to people and make things happen,’ he said. ‘It’s up to you as a new author. You can sit back and wait and see, but there is a limit to what the publisher can actually do at this stage.’

Still puzzled I replied, ‘That’s their job, isn’t it. All that publicity and stuff.’

‘Oh no,’ he said. ‘If you think like that you’ll get nowhere.’ After that he gave me a list of tasks to do and I must say that it was a bit daunting at first.

  • Visit likely bookshops who might sell your book and I mean go in and see them. They get hundreds of leaflets sent. What will make them take note of yours?
  • Keep contact with them and take them publicity, like posters and book marks.
  • Arrange book signings wherever you can.
  • Pop into libraries, starting with your local ones.
  • Phone the press. You never know.

With that list, getting quite excited I added some of my own. Since Riduna was based on Alderney and Guernsey and was historical romantic fiction and a good holiday read, we spent time dropping leaflets and bookmarks at hotels and visiting museums too.  Through this and my friend’s help I made good contact with several bookshops, held three successful book signings and was asked to talk at Bedford library. News reached the Alderney press, the Guernsey Press and the Luton News.

Now here is where the ripple effect started. Later I was contacted by Flitwick library and more recently Stotfold Library have also booked me for a slot, then out of the blue I had a phone call from a ladies group who was given my name by the library. The ripple effect.

Since I was focussed wholeheartedly on selling books through bookshops, my helpful website designer remarked,

‘You should try going on Twitter and Facebook or writing your own blog.’ This has rippled to being asked to be a guest blogger on sites like ‘Visit Guernsey’ and ‘Novel Publicity’. You will find that the more you are willing to give of yourself the more others are likely to support you. In fact Twitter is one continuous ripple as tweets are retweeted as you build up trust with your followers.

 Well, the rest is history and the ripple effect now has far reaching and unforeseen contacts (and friends) over the globe. Not only that but I have the satisfaction of readers telling me almost immediately what they think when they read ‘Riduna.’ Amazing.

Have you any more marketing tips for new authors on the block to share or personal examples of The Ripple Effect?




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Filed under Book Shops, Marketing your novel, Riduna, Social Media Networking

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