TGU: How to get the word out

Thursday February 21, 2008

Reading the lengthy document from O Books forwarded by Gordon Phinn reminded me what an awful mess it is, trying to be a publisher, and how little I know. So — redirection. And, I brought my anxieties to the Explorer list and Becky Carroll (I think it was) suggested I ask for assistance in this as I did Hemingway. Duh! It’s amazing that I should still need to be reminded of that possibility.

Since I don’t know who I should contact, I’ll go about it another way: Gentlemen, please put me into contact with anyone who can help me see how to structure a viable enterprise for present and coming conditions. You tell me what I need, as opposed to what I think I need.

The situation

You cannot/would not do the things necessary to compete in the traditional book-selling business, so the true difficulties of the trade should be – if anything – encouragement to you.

You are not seeking a casual buyer or the impulse buyer in a bookstore. You want the right people who can profit from your work.

Therefore, concentrate on the question of how they will find you, and you see that it is as it was originally in Hampton Roads to you lost sight of it – or rather to you lost confidence; let them find you Upstairs and your job is done.

Now what does this mean in practice?

It means simply have something to offer that people need, send out the word partly by free samples and partly by talking about it and mostly by concentrating on it Upstairs – and they will find you because it will answer their needs.

Commerce always tempts you to panic, thinking you can’t compete blind. But that needn’t be the situation.

Yes I see that. Website, blog, e-mails, written content, all acting as beacons toward people.

Then if you want to go on the road you can – but you don’t need to. You don’t need to do anything you don’t want to do. But think in terms of service.

Yes. I know these things but it is true, a form of panic takes over when I think “where is the money going to come from?” That advice in the O Books document scared me.

Diversify your product – get more variants of each thing – and you will do well. Put out Babe as an e-book at a low price – five dollars perhaps – and then as a printed book – and then as an audio file if you wish (we’re not recommending that, just pointing out possibilities outside the box) and then as action figures and bubblegum cards if you care to!

Or I could sell the e-book at $10 and give a $5 rebate off the print version.

Or you could take money for both, delivering the e-book immediately and the printed book X months later.

And I have lots of product to be developed – audio files of sessions in the box or with Rita, say. They could be offered for a small but not negligible charge.

Bundle them and the amount can be made more significant. 10 prep sessions for one price, say $10. This makes it negligible per session for your buyer – provided that it is inexpensive for you to produce.

I could read parts of Muddy Tracks into an audio file. I could produce lots of audio stuff in fact that people could download it onto their iPods or whatever people use.

Of course. You see, you have more flexibility, more opportunity, than you were realizing.

Yes. If I think of myself as a beacon, transmitting, that is a very freeing image. But it’s insane in conventional terms.

That’s why no partners. Use your intuitions, your connection, and hold the vision.

Alright, I can do this. As soon as we start talking I can see that indeed I am getting back into the rut of the printed word only and that is not what I am. I am a communicator! So — any means.

How will they find you?

Keywords. How do I properly configure things for keywords?

Exactly. Get expert help for optimizing. Experts, not partners.

3 thoughts on “TGU: How to get the word out

  1. Two comments:
    1). As with everything (it seems) in your blog, this posting can be inspirational/useful to every individual, in a variety of ways. Thank you for the work it takes for you to share. I absolutely was “led” to your blog – within the first paragraph or two, I felt the resonance of such truth. (For me…). I am richer for it.

    2). “I could read parts of Muddy Tracks into an audio file.”
    Oh man – I would pay much for audio books with you narrating. Maybe just simply reading past entries and discussing them, much like you did with “Gospel of Thomas”. I’m guessing you have loads of material at the ready. Pick a journal entry, sit down and record yourself reading thru it, including impressions, and maybe even instances in your life where it applied. Post it on your website / Amazon for sale. Voila! Think of something like a YouTube recording, but audio only – but do it on the fly, first take, perfect or not, nervous and all – just keep it natural. Just be you. Think of how that would feel to a listener…it would feel cozy and warm instead of sterile and cold. People could listen to discussions any time, all stored on their phones, computers, or memory sticks. They’d make great gifts. You could sell them in 30 min packets, or bundle them into categories (buy 10, get slight discount, etc). You’d be sharing the talks you’ve had with upstairs, it wouldn’t take any “publishing” (again, I encourage you to “keep it raw” – for example, unfiltered honey tastes sooooo much better than filtered….well, so will your readings), AND you’d sure be getting the word out!

    Go, Frank Go!!! 😊

  2. Good ideas, LisaC.

    I’m amazed at how many of my buddies listen to podcasts. I haven’t much. I’ve been more of a book reader. But several folks at a TMI Local Chapter gathering a couple weeks ago were talking about Bob Monroe’s books being out on audio and how they listen to them while commuting to and from work. I found that interesting and thought I’d add audio files into my repertoire.

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