On my summer To Do list of marketing madness, I’ve spent the last week or so reaching out to my local chain stores / book giants. Since Borders closed, the main book giant in my region is Barnes and Noble. Nice, big (in a Fox Books sort of way) with chocolate, toys, and coffee to lure in consumers, Barnes and Noble is the reading super store.
Most Barnes and Noble stores have local books/authors sections, and getting in can be easy or difficult depending on the number of authors in your area, the size of the store, the type of work, and who you know. With three regular stores and two university attached shops, putting my book on the shelves there is the best step I can do. My publisher is taking care of most of it – contacting the CR managers and such, but I’m on the ground doing the general introductions and putting the buzz in people’s ears.
So far – there is a genuine interest from the CR managers and buyers I’ve spoken with, so everything looks good, but I won’t have anything solid down without a contract/order form. This, of course, relies upon my dates (pub date, etc), and for some stores, they want to coordinate a book signing or some author event in order to augment preliminary sales which is perfect as far as I’m concerned.
Best advice in this regards is just be honest. Give the information you have and don’t try and over attach your book to your region if it isn’t set there. As both a local author and with a book set in the local city, I’ve got a bit of a leg up, but that wasn’t the plan. It was a happy coincidence. If you’re like me and writing urban fiction, the city sets the stage for the whole work and is tightly associated with the main character or plot.
Anyways, I will keep you guys updated if anything solid pops up here. Otherwise, good luck.