Before we talk about release days, here are some pics of some of the writing spaces we've seen so far. Aren't they great?
|This is Maddie's office, which is mobile so she can work anywhere. I like the classy move of having Go Teen Writers pulled up on her iPod :)|
|This is also Maddie. She's supposed to be listening. Instead Maddie's sister snapped a picture of her working on her WIP.|
|Alex has logged a lot of time at his university's Starbucks, his place of choice for editing his manuscript. We're guessing the barista starts his drink as he walks in the door.|
|Alex also likes the window seat. Over the course of 10 days, he spent 90 hours here typing. (Stephanie speaking - hey, Alex, I think we have the same laptop!)|
|Pjotr requires his keyboard for writing. It helps him find the right tone and rhythm for his sentences. Love it!|
If you haven't submitted pictures to the contest yet, be sure and send them in soon. Click here for details on how to enter.
So ... release days. What does an novelist's release day look like, anyway? Well, it's different for everyone. Maybe more so for me since I live in the middle of nowhere with no bookstore in town.
For my first book, By Darkness Hid, I did nothing. I'd gotten all my marketing stuff done. I'd sent out review copies to influencers and sent the Amazon.com link to them with a plea to post their book reviews asap. And I'd toyed with the idea of having a party at my house, but the idea of inviting people over to celebrate the fact that I'd written a book felt weird. Besides, there was a potluck going on at the church that night, and we had to be there.
So we went to the potluck, and on the dessert table was a sheet cake with my book cover on it. My husband had ordered it for me! (He is the sweetest, most thoughtful husband ever.) I looked everywhere for the picture I took of the cake. Alas, I can't find it. :-(
But it was frosted in white with this picture on the top:
And it was tasty.
My second and third release days went in a somewhat similar fashion (without cakes).
My fourth book, Replication, released with a bit of confusion. I thought that a December 18th release date meant that I would have a Christmas release. So I planned to do a big book signing on release day in a nearby city, but when I suggested this to my publisher, I found out that December 18th was a ship-to-store date, not an in-store date. The books wouldn't reach stores before Christmas. So, instead, I used my author copies to have a little before Christmas signing at the local drugstore.
For my fifth book, The New Recruit, I was home as well. This time I tried a release day contest. I launched the Go Undercover Scavenger Hunt contest, which was a riot. The rules video remains my daughter's favorite video I've made. She actually tried to get me to show it to some writers I was speaking to last week. I tried to tell her that it wasn't so helpful to writers, but she would not be hindered. Every time she finds me at the computer, she asks if we can watch Prière. Let me tell you, there's nothing better than having your kid be your fan, even if it's not the way you expected. (I think she just likes to laugh at her momma.)
Captives, my sixth official novel. And this time I'm trying my very first launch party. I didn't rent out a local restaurant and send invitations (and plane tickets) to industry professionals. And you couldn't line up at your local Barnes & Noble to buy a copy of Captives at midnight this morning. (Well, I suppose you could have if you really wanted to, but the employees likely would have given you a strange look and asked, "What book do you want to buy?")
None of that hoopla. My launch party is on Facebook. And I'm also having a Twitter Q&A beforehand. So that's like two launch parties in one day.
The Twitter Q&A is at 11:00 a.m. Pacific at @JillWilliamson on Twitter. Ask any question you like. Later on that evening, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Pacific, I’m having a launch party on Facebook. It’s going to be fun, fun, fun. And I am going to give away lots of books! 50 physical books total (not all mine). And I even have prizes for international peeps. Click here to see the list of prizes. We're also going to have virtual snacks that can be drooled over but, sadly, not tasted, and I wouldn't be a bit surprised if some celebrities popped in and maybe some characters too, virtually, of course.
So, for those of you who don't like marketing, aren't really people persons, or live in the middle of nowheresville, never fear. You too can have an online book launch party someday. That's the magic of the Internet. Hope to see you all tonight on my Facebook page. You don't have to stay the whole time to win, by the way. Pop in when you can.
Will I see you at the parties? Also, know anyone who's done something creative and fun for a release day? Share in the comments.