The Summer 2014 issue of Scratch (my magazine for writers) is now available. Inside, you’ll find a roundtable I hosted on book marketing and promotion, with an all-star lineup of industry folks with a wide range of experiences and viewpoints.
Here’s a little snippet, featuring Rachel Fershleiser of Tumblr, talking about the author’s role in the marketing process:
With the number of books in the marketplace, it’s going to take all of us. It’s going to take the marketing and publicity department at your publisher, your agent, your best friend, your local bookstore, librarians who love your work. It’s going to take every single person invested in your work, working together. So the author is a piece of it.
There’s this sense that this is something new, that we’re asking authors to build their own platform, and they didn’t have to before. In my experience, it’s really that you didn’t use to have the opportunity to build your own platform. So if you wanted to sell a nonfiction book, you had to already be a professor at Harvard or have a show on CNN. Or you had to have an Iowa MFA or know Lorrie Moore.
So we’re not saying you have to do something you didn’t have to do before. We’re saying you used to have to have one of six kinds of traditional platform. Now you have the opportunity to make one no matter who you are and where you are. So it’s more open, not less.
In addition to Fershleiser, the roundtable features branding expert Cindy Ratzlaff; Tim Grahl, author of Your First 1,000 Copies; longtime marketer and publicist Claire McKinney; Kathleen Schmidt, director of publicity for Weinstein Books; Maris Kreizman of Kickstarter; and Dana Kaye of Kaye Publicity.
Go read the roundtable for free. (Registration is required.)
Also free in this issue:
- Baby Gotta Eat by Kima Jones—including her 2012–2014 writing expenses
- an illustrated essay, What Took Me So Long, by Carolita Johnson
- Real Writers’ Houses, lifestyle photos from the Scratch community of readers
- The Transparency Index, where we reveal the relationships that went into putting together the issue, as well as how much money we’ve earned/spent
- Letter From the Editors