Lesson 10. Why you don’t want a tiny advance either.
A tiny advance is a vote of little confidence in your work; it means the publisher isn’t risking much on you, and therefore won’t need to spend a lot of money on marketing. The marketing budget for your book is, generally, related to the size of the advance.
On the other hand, you have the opportunity, by your own clever marketing initiatives, to have a significant impact on sales. If the publisher is hoping to sell 4,000 copies and you can get that up to 6,000, they’ll be very impressed. Publishers love authors who work hard to sell their books, and you’ll get a better deal next time, and more promotion.
But book marketing is a minefield, I hear you say. And fiction is much harder to promote than non-fiction. Where do I begin? And if I go to all the time and effort, how do I know it’s working? Help!
For an overview about traditional methods of book promotion, see this article on my web site. http://www.ian-irvine.com/promotion.html. It’s a little dated now, because it doesn’t cover social media, however a future post will.
In the meantime, this article talks about my first steps into social media book promotion. http://ripping-ozzie-reads.com/2011/07/30/ian-irvines-adventures-using-facebook/
And for a great site devoted to the topic of book marketing, with a host of useful articles and tips, I recommend Dana Lynn Smith’s The Savvy Book Marketer, http://bookmarketingmaven.typepad.com/