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What's Your Biggest Challenge with Your Book?

I'd be interested to learn what authors/publishers on this network think their biggest challenges are with their book. I wonder if there's any common, pervasive challenge we all face.

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Hi everybody,
Thank you for this topic. It is right for me.
I have two challenges with my book at these days. First - the knowledge of English (it is my second language) and the second one - low budget for promotion. I really want meet with my customers - parents, nanny and music teacher, to talk with them and lead some blogs, but I feel not comfortable with English grammar and vocabulary. Can you imagine a writer, who is not able to tell and explain what he want?
Before publish my articles or book I always ask translator and couple of editors for help. May be somebody give me friendly advice?
I read a lot about different marketing campaigns. As I am new in book marketing and have very low budget (I am not working anywhere, except my home and computer because I have a child with disability). From where can I start my marketing campaign with these two challenges? How can I sell my book which have already one book award?
Tatiana,

An outside of the box thought - if you're wanting to connect with people through social networking sites, but you fear that your English is not strong enough, I wonder if you could work out a barter arrangement with someone who needs to write in fluent Ukranian, or other languages you grew up with (Russian?). You clean up her Ukranian and she cleans up your English. Just a thought. I'm sure lots of businessmen, missionaries, social workers, etc. are needing a service like that.

Concerning how to market your book on a low budget, you might want to read over these cheap tactics I've been using to market my book.

http://wisdomcreekpress.com/how-to-market-your-books.htm

It's been a slow process, a bit of marketing each day (I'm working, raising kids and caring for my 104-year-old granny), but I've found that over time all these little efforts are paying off as word of mouth is taking over and it's starting to sell on its own.

Congratulations on your award! I won a "Best Books" award a couple of months ago. I bought the little foil stickers to put on the books. When I took it to an independent bookstore to sell on consignment, the owner looked at the sticker and said, "This helps." Also, I sent a free press release about the award to an organization that lets libraries know about books. You might want to do the same thing. Here's the site:

http://liswire.com/content/personal-finance-book-teaches-gen-y-go-%...

You also might want to submit your book to VOYA for review. They have the ear of librarians who want to add to their youth collections.

http://www.voya.com/

I think it was one of those two places that started libraries sending in orders to distributors, landing me a contract with a distributor to libraries.

Sincerely,

J. Steve Miller
President, Legacy Educational Resources
Author of Enjoy Your Money! How to Make It, Save It, Invest It and Give It
"The money book for people who hate money books."
http://wisdomcreekpress.com/press_kits.html
Terrific post, Steve, and thanks for the useful links. You are experiencing the "long tail" personally. It's amazing how these books, despite the huge number of new books published each year, continue to find a market. Your book has profited from your persistent marketing. Most books are marketed very little, or not at all, or only for a couple of months around pub date. If you continue, the book will become a reliable income source for many years (unless it goes out of date, of course, which will open up the possibility of a new edition!).
Joel,

Thanks for the encouragement! And I think that what you're saying is key: "Most books are marketed very little." From what I'm seeing, that includes books by the big-time publishers. Only the top-selling books get the marketing dollars.

That's great news for us small guys! It really doesn't matter how many hundreds of thousands of book were published last year, if virtually nobody's marketing them. I've got a video game place that sells my book. No competition there at all. The only book for sale in the store. Once you think "beyond the bookstore" you have very little competition, if any.
Dear Steve,
Thank you for a good letter and useful information. Congratulations on your award too!
I've learned a lot since my first published book because back then, I knew NOTHING about marketing. I'm still learning bit by bit because I market in my spare time which is usually at night. I market on the net mostly because it's a little hard to do local at the moment. Marketing on the net can be a hit or miss at times. I remember being excited when a marketing agency promised to draw people to my book. I was happy to pay the 100 bucks for 100 hits because I thought this would be the ticket I needed to rake in the sales. That didn't happen, of course. I did sell some books, but those sales were from my own sweat and not from hitting enter for more clicks.

I'd have to say that my biggest struggle is finding the right places to market my book. Some places you will give you the exposure you are looking for. There are others that are a complete miss too. It can be hard to find the right place sometimes, be it a forum, an ad on the net, or a press release. And that's what I struggle with.
I really agree with you: learning, learning and learning again. Thank you for advice very much.
The biggest challenge I am facing is getting the book marketed beyond the state in which I live. I feel I have all the dominos set up, but I need just one to fall over. I do motivational speaking across the midwest. (about 30-40 events in the upcoming year) I have had great luck in selling books at the events and have received very positive feedback from people who read the book. My book is in all of the local bookstores, but for me to "break even" on this endeavor, I need to get more of a widespread audience.
Kent,

Can you tell us a bit more about your motivational speaking? You're speaking about 3x per month, which is a lot. Where do you speak? How did you get started? How do you set up new speaking engagements? Is it mostly free, or how much do you charge?

I'm just getting started in speaking (although I spoke a lot in my early years, before I was ever published), and would appreciate any tips. Lately, I've spoken at a youth retreat and a local chamber of commerce and a club at the local university. I get good reviews from attendees, but would like to set up more opportunities.

J. Steve Miller
President, Legacy Educational Resources
Author of Enjoy Your Money! How to Make It, Save It, Invest It and Give It
"The money book for people who hate money books."
http://wisdomcreekpress.com/press_kits.html
Bill,

My biggest challenge is the zinger of the beinning of the book. Grabbing the audience from the first line. I am new at this and it has been a challenge for me to get my thoughts down. Not just writting them down but making it jump up off the page!
Bill I have to agree with Celina! But my challenge is getting out of my first chapter. I feel like I have rewritten so many times and I am afraid of loosing interest or even the reason I began to start writing it. I guess I am working on the killer zinger for the opening is what my problem and the reason for the rewrites. How do I avoid this problem? Even if I try to just write the whole thing and not do rewrite it somehow changes the whole picture of the book. Stuck! HElp!
My biggest challenge as a new author with a book published from a "hybrid" publisher is marketing and promotion. Most school and public libraries will not consider my book for their collections without a review, which I only learned about recently and my book doesn't have. I also can't participate in programs such as Children's Book Week or be endorsed as a speaker at schools by writer organizations that recognize works by authors of traditional publishers as the only source of reputable writing.

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