Friday, December 14, 2012

What Do You Mean I Have To Market My Book?

            Well, here I am…sitting in front of my computer trying to figure out what to do. 

You see — after a lifetime of dreaming, writing strange stories that my teachers never appreciated, and crying over mass produced rejection letters starting with the phrase, “While I enjoyed your work…” — I’ve finally published my first novel! Yippee! It’s called Riddle in Stone and will be released by Diversion Books in February of 2013. 

Here’s the catch….  I have to help “promote” it. 

What the hell does that mean? 

According to my agent and publisher, I have to, among other things, start a “blog.”

I don’t blog. 

It sounds disgusting. It reminds me of my college roommate vomiting in the garbage can—BLOG!  BLOOOOOG! 

Also, I’m not very tech-savvy. 

I can handle e-mail. However, I have yet to master smart phones, texting, newer IPODs, or Windows 8.  So this whole “blogging” thing scares the crap out of me. I’ll probably be the only “blogger” who gets rejection letters. 

“Dear Blogger,
While I enjoyed reading your blog, I did not enjoy it strongly enough to take it on as a project at this time….”

Fortunately, I’m quite sure nobody is out there reading this.  So, as Billy Murray said in Caddyshack, “At least I have that going for me.”

Yet, if I want Riddle in Stone to be successful…and I really, REALLY do…I apparently have to enter the 21st Century—kicking and screaming, the entire way. 

So here I am.

Now, according to “Blogging For Dummies” (And yes, I actually did research blogging.) I have to blog about something.  I have to have some sort of theme to my ramblings.  I’m supposed to tap into my “unique expertise” and enlighten people about something.

I have no expertise.

Well, that’s not entirely true.  I’m a researcher by training. I do cost analysis and policy stuff related to the employment of people with disabilities. But, honestly, do you really want to hear about that?  BLOOOOG!

Then again…maybe I DO have something in common with a great many of you imaginary readers. Something that would be helpful for me to write about as well as helpful (or at least entertaining) for any of you who might stumble into this digital hell to read.

Specifically, I’m…well, a tad neurotic. 

I have to have things a certain way, like needing a cup of hot tea (in a certain mug) immediately to my right while I write. I have my little routines, such as listening to the radio while I drive to the health club, but NOT when I’m driving to my office. And I need to know EXACTLY what’s on the day’s schedule each and every morning. It must be written down; otherwise, I simply can’t function.

Some people see the glass half-full, others half-empty.  I didn’t realize that there was a glass I’m supposed to be looking at. It’s not my fault. Nobody told me!

I think most writers are like me. By our very nature, we’re insecure and not well-suited for conventional society. Why else do we spend so much time developing our own little worlds? Eh? 

Don’t believe me?

Ask any writer about their characters.  Ask them if they “hear” their characters talking in their head. Or whether they know what their characters think about any given topic. We do!  In fact, next to my wonderful wife, Edmund (my character in Riddle in Stone *cough* Third plug! *cough*) is probably the closest thing I have to a friend.  Okay…that’s being a little melodramatic. But it’s also very close to being true. I KNOW him just like any writer knows his or her own characters.

In other words, what the DSM-IV describes as schizoaffective disorder, we writers call “character development”!  That, and generally speaking, we’re really odd people without many friends.

So this is what I want to do…. 

Over the past couple of years, I’ve been trying to “get better.”  That is, I’m trying to become a happier, more well-adjusted, less rigid, social, normal person.  I want to “roll with the punches” and “be flexible” and “play well in the sandbox” and “be the wind beneath somebody’s wings.”  I really want to become the type of person my sons deserve to have as their father. I need to be a better person.

So…this blog (BLOOOOG!) is going to be about that…my journey as a neurotic writer to become…well, a less neurotic writer. 

It’s going to be a long ride, my dear imaginary reader. I hope you’ll join me from time to time.  Insanity is a lonely party.

At the very least, this blog thingie will be cheap therapy.

Until next time….


**EDIT: I'm going to try to post each week. But we'll see how that goes.***


  1. LOL...I think those of us who write can relate to the OCD life of one. It spills out into our everyday lives and I happen to think it is what makes us unique and loveable. Hmmm, just a thought here, but your quest for "normalness" is a brave adventure.

    I will certainly be purchasing your book when it comes out and we can rally the Rohirim over on other websites too.

    You have to start somewhere and your blog didn't make me BLOOOOG!!!!! :D

    Cheers from someone who is already a fan and I will visit you often and comment.

    1. Thanks Rwhen!! I can always count on you for support! Thank you. Thank you so much!

  2. lol - First-off, someone is reading your blog. and I think you're the first blog to tempt me into hitting the 'follow' button. Very funny, and so true.

    Just so you don't feel like the only one - I too started a blog after I got an author checklist - the second item was "send us the URL of your website and/or blog". I sighed, and two hours later, Wordpress got $50 of my hard earned (day-job) money. I sincerely doubt I will make this back :-P

  3. Thanks for visiting Tara!!! And for your support. I appreciate it.

    Also, I'm glad that I didn't go with Wordpress! Boy! This writing hobby is expensive enough with all the books we buy and fail to return to the library on time. I'm not sure I'd want to pay $50 for a blog.

    Post your blog address so we can visit!!!

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    1. Thanks! I did the site, so I'm to blame:) It basically is a template with Blogger. I changed a few things, but not many. I like the picture of the trees because they're calm and I like to hike, so I figure they're as good as any.

      Thanks for stopping by. I'll return the favor!

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