Saturday, 1 December 2012

Launch Day Fatigue - with David Robinson

Launch Day Fatigue

Ever wonder what we novelists do with our time? Do you see me lounging away the hot afternoons in some tropical paradise, quaffing Cliquot and counting the zeroes on the end of my bank balance? Chance would be a fine thing. I’m more likely to be swilling brown ale and counting red integers on my overdraft.

Last Friday, November 23rd, saw the release of my fifth STAC Mystery, Murder at the Murder Mystery Weekend. Launched simultaneously as an e-book and paperback, my publisher, Crooked Cat Books, went to great lengths to make sure people knew it was out there. As always there was a huge presence on Facebook, and as the author, it was incumbent on me to be there.

It may be the fifth STAC Mystery, but it’s my sixth title with Crooked Cat, so logically, I have had six launch parties. Right? Wrong. I’ve actually had about ten. That’s because originally, my publisher staggered the e-book and paperback releases.

The process is always the same. People drop by through the day and evening, passing on their best wishes, there’s a lot of fun, a lot of gags, and much music (usually from YouTube). There are peaks and lulls, but one thing remains consistent: my presence. I have to field the gags, raid my fund of one-line comebacks. I have to spread the word even on the day, invite people I may have forgotten and welcome them when they turn up. And while I’m doing all this, I still have to deal with other, routine correspondence or online business, snatch the odd meal and take my crazy Jack Russell for occasional walks. Somewhere in between it all, I also have to work on the sixth STAC Mystery.

For the launch of Murder at the Murder Mystery Weekend I was up at five a.m., and I finally came away from the computer at just after 10 in the evening. Seventeen hours. And how many titles did the book sell on its first day?

I don’t know. The publisher has that information, but based on Amazon chart movements, it wasn’t many.

Chatting with other Crooked Cat authors on the weekend following, it seems that my experience is not typical. Most sell a good number of copies at their launch parties. I believe my sales are less good because I have so many launches, and it’s true to say that sales did pick up over the weekend after the launch.

So why bother?

I have to. It’s that simple. If I’m ever to quaff that Cliquot in a tropical paradise while counting the zeroes on my bank balance, I have to let the world know that David W Robinson has released yet another of his popular mysteries.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to work on number six and plan number seven.

David Robinson has produced several series, but the most popular are the light-hearted whodunits of the Sanford 3rd Age Club Mysteries, published by Crooked Cat Books. Visit the Sanford 3rd Age Club Mysteries website HERE


Cathie Dunn said...

Very true, David. It would appear that despite the presence of friends, authors and readers, the sales on release day are lower than during the following weeks and months.

My novels were both slow burners on release, but now I sell a decent number each month of each book, with the ebook versions being particularly successful. I'm quite happy with that, though it still doesn't allow me to buy that villa in the Maldives.

One day...

Nancy Jardine said...

David. *smiley face here* You have to be positive since you keep that ball rolling! Now, I've got a number of STACs to catch up on and a LAUNCH party to look forward to on FRIDAY!

Anonymous said...

I've never cared much for the promotion and marketing of the business, but it is oh so necessary.

Anonymous said...

thanks for share.