Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Self Promotion...

by David G. Woolley

...I've never liked it. Shamelessly talking about your work. Promoting your name. Getting yourself known. If praise is poison then notoriety is the last breath before the death of humility. Beware. A book release could happen to you very soon.

I am, sadly, a sales wimp. The marketing guys tried to convince me that its normal for authors to market their work.

"Dave, its what authors do."

"You want me to tell people they have to read my book? What am I gonna do, take away their temple recommend?"

"We can arrange that."

"I forgot. Deseret Book purchased you guys, didn't they."

"Marketing is like a caffeinated drinker denier."

"I don't drink."

"You say you don't, but you do."

"Look. I really don't."

"Get out there, smile a lot, tell 'em they've gotta read your book and show 'em that cool cover."

"I didn't do the cover."

"They can make millions off the secrets in your book."

"Its fiction."

"Self help money books are hot right now."

"All I wanted to do was entertain and inform."

"Look. You don't sell and you can kiss your entertaining and informing fantasies goodbye."

"So that's how it is?"

"That's how it always is."

I asked the editorial department if I could rewrite chapter twenty four, put a few money making secrets in there somewhere. They said it was already type set. The only changes I could make were simple spelling errors, a word choice, maybe a phrase if it was absolutely necessary to the plot. I suggested a few. Double your shekels on beach front property in Jerusalem. When the price of a yearling lamb hits five pieces of silver, buy. Money changing is a noble profession. They said the changes were likely not a good selection given the context of the scene. Captain Laban's death by beheading.

They gave me a copy of the newly released cover with the text of the the back liner and told me I had to post it. If I didn't they were going to pry open my mouth and force feed me a bottle of Coke. Read this for my sake. Please!

*Author's Note: I don't want to offend the editorial department, but I've got a more powerful back liner than this. My mother finished reading an advanced copy of Day of Remembrance last night. She called first thing this morning to say it was remarkable. Beat that endorsement marketing guys. If mom likes it I'll smile, I'll tell 'em they've got to buy a copy, and I'll show 'em the cool cover. Read Day of Remembrance. Its mother approved!

Inside Front Flap

Old World 600 B.C.: Under mandate from their prophet-father, the sons of Lehi face treachery and lethal danger as they seek to secure the brass plates from the ruthless Captain Laban. Meanwhile, Zoram and Elizabeth work feverishly to smith new plates and engrave the prophecies of Jeremiah--a vital task that must be completed before the Feast of the Trumpets, celebrated on the Day of Remembrance.

Old World, 19th Century: In his home built above the remains of Laban's treasury, Sephardic Jew Reuben Kessler anticipates the marriage of his son Danny on the Day of Remembrance. When tragedy strikes on the blessed day, the devastated fathers of the bride and groom must cling to their faith that God will remember His covenant people.

New World, 19th Century: Commissioned by the Angel Moroni, Joseph Smith Jr. endures harrowing challenges as he prepares to receive the plates of Gold and translate them into the Book of Mormon. The fulfillment of ancient promises draws near as Joseph returns each year to the Hill Cumorah on the Day of Remembrance.

Three families, three stories—yet in the grand design of the Lord, they intertwine as one. This fourth volume in the Promised Land saga bridges ancient and modern times to reveal the unfolding of a marvelous work and a wonder.

Cover Back Liner

Jeremiah held his hand to is mouth and coughed before saying, "Hidden in the calendar given to Moses is the appointed day for the record to come forth in the fullness of times...I must ready the brass plates to have part in that future Day of Remembrance, and curse any man who seeks to stop me, curse him to death."

Emotionally thrilling, spiritually uplifting, and richly satisfying, Day of Remembrance is the powerful story of the restoration of a timeless principle...kept alive in a brass-plate record sequestered deep in the treasury of Laban, captain of the Israelite guard at the turn of the sixth century before Christ.

This magnificent fourth volume in the Promised Land series takes the reader on a journey that is bold and sweeping in its scope, from the dangerous and intriguing politics of Jerusalem in 589 B.C., to the travails of Lehi and his family in the Sinai wilderness, to a nineteenth-century setting in the Old City of Jerusalem, and on to a young prophet in Palmyra New York, poised on the brink of the most significant events of the latter days.

This is David Woolley as his best. A matchless mixture of robust writing and meticulous research that deftly weaves together the human and divine strands to produce a tapestry of faith, obedience, and courage against all odds, where success seems impossible, but failure is unthinkable. The stunning impact of this story will linger long after the last pages have been turned.

Inside Back Flap

Author David G. Woolley's research of Old and New World archaeology, anthropology, and religion uniquely position him to write the Promised Land Series and bridge the ancient cultures of two hemispheres, bringing to life the times and places of the restoration scripture known as the Book of Mormon. His writing carefully blends the imaginative wonder of storytelling with the tangible world of historical events to delight, uplift, and inform readers who venture into the pages crafted by his hand.

Dr. Woolley earned a master's degree at the University of Iowa and a doctoral degree from Brigham Young University. He worked as the head soccer coach at Brigham Young University for six years and was also instrumental in establishing the Rangers Soccer Club (www.utahrangers.com) for youth players, where he is employed as the director of coaching.

David maintains the Promised Land website and the Top of the Morning blog, where he is busy in his writing room detailing the historical and inspirational background of the characters and settings that inspired this series. Please join him online for more of the Promised Land and for a sneak peak at future releases.

Join author David G. Woolley at his Promised Land Website. He is also a weekly contributor to the Latter Day Authors blog and he writes commentary and opinion at the Utah Ranger's Far Post blog


Sandra said...

This was one area that I was always frustrated with when I worked for a publisher. I used to always tell our authors, when the gave the same arguments that you give, "You are the one that knows your work the best. I can read your book and love it and then spend all day and night talking about it and still not be as enthused as you are. If you can't let everyone know how wonderful your book is, if you can't be enthused about your work, how do you expect others to be?"

And you already know how enthusiastic I am about your work. So get out there and tell people about it!

Francie Jenson said...

To borrow a Utah phrase, Oh my heck, Dave, promote away! I want to congratulate the writer of the back cover liner -- it is your best thus far (am I allowed to say that? delete if you have too ...).

I would also highly recommend that any one who hasn't read any of your books yet, treat themselves to starting with volume 1 then on through 2 and 3 -- if they start today and don't mind that they won't be able to get much else done, they can be done in time for the release of volume 4. It's perfect really :)

If I'd followed this plan maybe I would have got some Christmas shopping done last year between Thanksgiving and mid-December ...

David G. Woolley said...

Okay Sandra and Francie: I rewrote this Self Promotion post to make it a little more, well, promotional. Does it meet your approval?

And Francie I agree. This is my best work so far. While there is still room for all sorts of improvement.

And sorry about ruining your Christmas shopping last year. I noticed that your kids didn't have any new clothes. Everyone: meet Francie, one of very few if any first readers. She did a great job giving me feedback. Things like:

"Wow, Dave."

"Did you like it?"

"I don't undertand it."

You know. Feedback that warms the heart of any author.

Thanks Franice.

David G. Woolley

Francie Jenson said...

Now Dave, you know my feedback for "Day of Remembrance" was all positive. Well, except for when I stopped talking to you because of that tragedy mentioned in the inside front flap -- I can't believe reader's are being given a heads up about that!

I think you're getting confused -- the negative feedback came as I began volume two ... Does the word 'tedious' ring any bells?

Sandra said...

David, David, David don't ever mention to your publisher that your mother likes it. They just roll their eyes when an author tells them that relatives like it, because relatives are supposed to like it, they have to, it's in the relative contract and by laws. It is in big, bold letters at the top of the mom contract. They don't let you take your beautiful bundle of joy home from the hospital until you agree to love every thing your child ever does, draws, writes or creates in any way shape or form.

David G. Woolley said...

I knew that. But an endorsement is an endorsement.

Sandra said...

ok, I'll give you that. But that is why you have to tell people that you wrote a little book. Then they will ask you what it is about, you will tell them, your enthusiasm for your work will shine through, they will be intrigued, buy your book, read it, love it, tell their friends and neighbors and family, who in turn buy your book, read it.....

And then book sales go up, you are happy, Covenant is happy, Marketing guys are happy and you are responsible for all that happiness just because you said, "I wrote a book". See how easy that is?

David G. Woolley said...

Shame on you Sandra. Mom always knows best!

Sandra said...

Of course she does, and I tell my kids that at least 20 thousand times a day. My working publicity side kicked in just then.
So, I am a mom and mom knows best so get out there and tell people about your book!

And really? I can barely wait to agree with your mom about how good your book is, because we both know I am going to agree with her. When I FINALLY get one.

Jennie said...

Hey Dave, I gave Volume Four a little plug on my blog http://notesfromjenniesdesk.blogspot.com and I haven't even read it yet. My column is due Monday and it's killing me that I have to finish a couple of other books I've already started writing reviews for before I get the pleasure of reading yours. I loved the other three volumes so I'm expecting great things from this one.

David G. Woolley said...

Thanks Jennie. How in the world did I get so lucky to have you decide you'd like to review my book? I'm honored by your interest. Many happy reviews to you. And I love your website. How did I not know about it until now?

kura2025 said...

I found you books through Traci Abramson's blog and I'm excited to start them. P.S...the middle man on the cover looks exactly like George Dyer.

David G. Woolley said...

Hi Kura 2025:

Thanks for stopping by Top of the Morning. And double thanks for your interest in reading the Promised Land Series. I really hope it meets your high standards and at the same time it really bring to life the Book of Mormon.

Come back again. I'm almost finished with the Boarders post. Should be the best one of the series!

All the best,

David G. Woolley

Tiff said...

According to my sister Noelle, I am to write and tell you my thoughts on the Promised Land series. I really enjoyed the books! I learned so much and had a hard time imagining that the ficitional characters were just that. I will send you more details, but I don't know if you want me to send them through this blog or what. More details to come...

Tiffany Platt