I grew up knowing that Sales was in my blood. My father was a salesman. He could sell you on anything. I like to think I inherited that gene, and it pretty much bears out even today when I try to sell something I really love to anyone who'll listen. (Even when said product is no longer made.) For instance, I still chat up Paladin Tools - even though they were bought out by Greenlee years ago and no longer make their signature orange-handled crimpers. And hey, have you tried O&H Danish Bakery's kringles yet?
Hell, I was
selling chairs to a volunteer at the thrift shop just last week. (Yeah,
selling something to someone who works in the store. But hey, she was
the one who told me she likes to refinish old furniture and there were
these awesome chairs I thought would be perfect for her.) But I
Anyway, I sell stuff. Every item out there is a product that can be sold. It's widgets all the way down. So, here I am at the release day of my very own product - Dying Embers. I know this widget better than any other widget I've ever had the opportunity to sell. I believe in this like no other. And I'm stymied at how to proceed.
I think part of the problem is in our society, it's verboten to talk yourself up. It's pushy. And lord knows, we don't want to be perceived as pushy.
Another part of the problem is it might be a widget or a product or a thingamabob, but this particular doohickey is 100% me. I could sell tools because I didn't have a vested interest in the tool itself. (The commissions, yeah, but the tool? No.) If someone didn't want to buy the tool - even after I told them all the wonders of said tool - then it was no skin off my nose. Move on to the next, and hopefully more enlightened, customer. (I really did sell the best tools.) Sure, their unwillingness to buy did reflect somewhat on my sales ability, but not on me personally. This time, if someone doesn't want to buy my book, it's a direct reflection on me. And if they bought a tool they decided they didn't like, it wasn't my problem. If they buy this book and decide they don't like it, they're talking about something that came out of me.
No wonder writers have such a tough time marketing their books. I mean, I have no problem selling other writers' books. (BTW, fellow Killer Chick, JB Lynn's latest book The Hitwoman's Downward Dog should be coming out soon.) I just have a problem selling my own.
So, in the interest of improving my own marketing skills for myself, go pick up a copy of my first self-published book - Dying Embers. It doesn't slice, dice or make Julienne fries. It's doesn't have shiny orange grips or added torque. It sure as hell doesn't get 34 miles to the gallon on the highway. But it should be a gripping and enjoyable read. It's cathartic as hell for anyone who's ever wanted to get back at their former boyfriends. And it goes well with a half-gallon of double-fudge-brownie ice cream.