Saturday, August 23, 2008

Is This a Good Month to Market Your Book?


"Tie your book to a current event..."

How many times have you read a version of this tip?

Until recently, I couldn't figure out a way to use this advice in my own marketing campaign. You see, I write mysteries - make believe murder and mayhem stories. It seems more than a little crass to consider tying my stories to the latest gruesome murder in an effort to receive free publicity. Just how would that call begin? "Good morning Mr. Producer! You know that story you ran last night on the slaughter of the much loved pastor of that little church over on main? In my recent novel, a minister finds his end in much the same way. Do you think the murderer read my book? Perhaps we can talk about it on your morning show..."

I think not.

Some mystery series have themes. The protagonist has a hobby (scrapbooking, knitting, antiquing) or a profession (catering, teaching, archeologist) that can be used to approach special interest groups. I wasn't that smart. My protagonist is a PI and her spare time hobbies seem to revolve around dating and helping out the homeless. She isn't even an expert PI. She's young, inexperienced, makes mistakes.

Early this morning I started to wonder about those National __________ Months. Who decides? Is there a list? Is there something for Hacksaw or the challenged Eva Baum?

Google to the rescue.

Did you know that 2008 is the International Year of
  • Languages
  • Planet Earth
  • The Potato
  • Sanitation

What about the month of September? September is (partial list)

  • Be kind to editors and writers month
  • Library card sign-up month
  • National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month
  • Menopause Awareness Month
  • National Potato Month
  • Pleasure Your Mate Month
  • Healthy Aging Month
  • Shameless Promotion Month
  • National Hispanic Heritage Month
  • Hug a Texas Chef Month

And on the weekly list (partial list)

  • Sept 8-13 Lind Dance Week
  • Sept 27-Oct 4 - Banned Books Week - Celebrating the Freedom to Read
  • Sept 18-21 International Women's Ecommerce Days
  • Sept 21-27 Build a Better Image Week

And then there is a daily list that includes things like Be Late for Something Day, Google Commemoration Day, Salami Day, Talk Like a Pirate Day, Responsible Dog Ownership Day, Elephant Appreciation Day, and International Literacy Day.

Anyone can find a tie-in to their book and use it for marketing - check it out at or

In case you were wondering - October is National Toilet Tank Repair month. Be ready.

What are your favorite marketing reference sites? Please use the blog comments to tell us about it.


Anonymous said...

Good post. Thanks for the ideas and links. I too often puzzle at how to take up the "tie your book promo to current events" axiom. This gives me some concrete ideas.

Denise said...

HI Charlotte,

Great blog topic. I had never thought of tying my book to a current event. Thanks to your article and the links I already have some ideas.

Word Crafter said...

Excellent Job! I am amazed at the workings of a writer's mind - well okay Charlotte Phillips' writer's mind. Thanks for the tips. Good luck with the blog a thon!

Morgan Mandel said...

Did you make that one up called Shameless Promotion Month?

Morgan Mandel

Maryann Miller said...

Charlotte, thanks for the heads up for October. I will be ready for that one. :-)

Seriously, good blog and very informative. Thanks.