Saturday, September 24, 2011

Time for promotion, or I feel faint

It's almost time for my new book to come out.  November 15! (Kindly mark it on your calendar. :-) Here's the cover, its first public appearance. Echelon Press is the publisher.  It's suspense with strong romantic elements, romantic suspense by some definitions. It's not pure anything.
I'm working on log lines too.She wanted a rottweiller. Instead she got Riley. Or, Everything she believed was a lie, but the truth is Cold Comfort.
I love the idea of having a new book, but when I think of the work that goes into promotion, I find my thoughts veering off, like maybe I should scrub the kitchen floor before I start (or any other unpleasant task I usually try to avoid). Promotion takes a certain mindset, and I, being a natural hermit, have to work myself up to it. I enjoy meeting people (that's the fun part), but putting yourself in a place to do it and deliberately drawing attention to yourself are very difficult.
Some things are more fun, like making a brochure. I did it and love the way it turned out. Bookmarks, they're fun too. Posters? Check. But now I'm stuck on business cards. I'm already late doing them, and I can't seem to get it right. Here are the two designs I'm considering today. (I've already been through many.) I love color and texture, so the clean, elegant cards, white with minimal information in clear type, don't really appeal. They aren't me--elegant I'm not.
I wavered between Author, Writer, and Novelist. Novelist may be the right word but it doesn't sound right. Author and Writer could mean anything from medical journals to popular science.  Then I decided to add Romantic Suspense.  Anyway, you'd be amazed at the effort that goes into this. Here they are. What do you think? The practical one with two of my books? Or the pretty, textured one with the meaningless red flower? Or should I go back to the drawing board? Comments would be helpful.

32 comments:

Lev Raphael said...

The one on the left has too much information. The other one is more memorable and attractive.

Wendy Reis said...

Very nice blog. I think most writers are, as you put it, hermits. Introverts. Promotion is very "out there" and we are not hard wired for it. As an editor I find I can assist my little heart out when an author has a launch, I make a great second banana. Headliner, not so much.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

I like the cover art for Cold Comfort. It's vivid and bold and draws the eye. Perfect for romantic suspense.

Jacqueline Seewald
THE TRUTH SLEUTH

P. A. Deuson said...

I love the 'flower' one. Memorable, vertical, and romantic!

You could put the QR codes for both books on the back. Plus other info - or have you already!

Striking cover for Cold Comfort - congratulations!

Loglines are hard!

Pat

Sandy Cody said...

Great post, Ellis - true for so many writers. Love the cover of the coming book. As for the cards, I like the one with the red flower; it's just more appealing + it will still be appropriate when you've moved on to even more books, giving readers something consistent to identify as yours.

Ellis Vidler said...

Thank you all. I appreciate your ideas. I prefer the flower one. I did take off the lines under the book pics, and it helps, but the flower still draws me. I have similar one in grays with a stalk of delphinium up the side. I like it but have to buy the picture before I can post it. Dreamstime.com has some beautiful ones.

Ellis Vidler said...

Pat, I haven't figured out QR codes yet. I'll check. If they're very small I may do it, but I'd planned to use the picture (whatever it is)on the back without any text. I like to write notes on the the ones I get. It helps me remember later.

P. A. Deuson said...

QR's are easy - google among many others.

http://createqrcode.appspot.com/

They can be made 100X100 so small enough I believe. All the cool kids are doing it!

Pat

Ellis Vidler said...

I'll go look. Thanks, Pat. I'd love to switch from wallflower to cool kid. :-)

Karen said...

Your new book cover is fantastic. It is the kind of cover that makes me want to buy the book even if I know nothing about it.

For the business cards I much prefer the single flower. It feels almost like an author brand and will carry you over many books to come.

Camille Minichino said...

Agreeing with many here -- the flower, with a small QR code on the back.

Best wishes for turning promotion into fun!

Linda Lovely said...

I'm apparently odd man out. I think the white card with the two covers is better. It sells your product and if they buy one book and keep the card, they may buy the second book. Just my opinion.

Una Tiers said...

Hi Ellis:The cover is stunning. The flowered card is gorgeous. The two cover card is more marketing oriented. Have you considered a blue background?
Una Tiers

Linda Reilly said...

Ellis, I love the one with the two book covers. Great job!!

Linda R

Ellis Vidler said...

LOL! I think the votes are about 50-50. But the branding idea is interesting. What if I used the red flower on my website, up in the corner? That's next on my list--revamp it, probably in a blue cloud of bad words.

DV Berkom said...

Hi Ellis,
LOVE the new cover! Beautiful, striking. I like the flower card for your business card best, but do keep the other one for any advertising you might do in the future. It really works in that regard.
Good luck!
DV

Star said...

I like the business card with the red flower best because it is simple and very romantic. I think it appeals more to women. The other one is good but would appeal more to men and I don't think that your books are aimed at men, right?
The new book cover is very good.
Which software did you use to create your business card?

Ellis Vidler said...

Hi, Star. I used Photoshop Elements 9, but I bought the flower on the green background from Dreamstime.com. On the other one I already had the book covers. I downloaded a blank template from Overnightprints.com and went from there. By the way, Adobe's offering Photoshop Elements 10 for $99 right now. I love what it does but it's definitely not user friendly.

Ellis Vidler said...

Una, I did consider a colored background but it was too much. With all the color in the covers, I think the white looks best.

Daphne, Maybe I should print both, but which would I give on what occasion? I'd end up giving the flower. I think Karen's idea of branding may work.

Linda, I have to hope I'll get the website looking decent and people will go from there. I'll post the gray card on FB. I like it too, but I'm still attracted to the red flower.

Peg Brantley said...

Can you have the flower drip a bit of blood?

Ellis Vidler said...

Peg, I don't think I can do it. Someone much better with Photoshop might. I could have it hit the bottom edge with a little splash. :-)

Kaye George said...

I like to see the book covers on the card. If you think it's too crowded, remember you can use the front and the back.

Ellis Vidler said...

Kaye, thanks. I think I'm going to have both cards and use the one with covers for more business-oriented contacts (without the little blurbs) and the flower for just handing out to people I meet. I can't give up the flower, but I do see the marketing value of the covers.

I really appreciate all the input and ideas. It helps to know how others see things.

Warren Bull said...

Great cover. JUst to throw a monkey wretch into the question, Could you have one book cover on one side of the card and the other cover on the opposite side?

Ellis Vidler said...

Hi, Warren. I could, or I could just have the new book and not show the other one, but I like it and don't want to forget it. I've left off The Peeper because it's different, more a police procedural or suspense novel and was written with Jim Christopher, but I thought the other two were compatible. This is very hard. You'd think it's my only chance to get the word out. :-)

Jacqueline Vick said...

I guess it depends on if they are more romance or more suspense. I like the one with the two book covers, but definitely gives off a suspense vibe. The one with the flower says more romance than suspense. I hope that helps!

Ellis Vidler said...

Jacqueline, I think it's more suspense than romance, at least more than RWA's definition of romantic suspense. I tried so many things, a gun, blood, a body--they just didn't work on a card, not with my limited skills. So I chose the flower. I love the splash of red. Wish I could have had a drop of blood as Peg suggested. I could see it, but I couldn't make it happen.

Bren Fousek Bowman said...

The flower one is more flexible...the other one limits you to two books. What happens when you write the third? :)

Mary Welk said...

Love the flower one. Like others have said, it brands you more as a romantic suspense author and it good for other books to come. You can always use the individual book covers on bookmarks.

Good luck with the book!

Ellis Vidler said...

Bren, new cards? But it is a consideration. :-)

Mary, thanks. I love the flower even though I see the practical aspects of the covers.

Nancy Lauzon said...

Congrats on your new book, Ellis. Wishing you mega sales!

Nancy Lauzon
http://chickdickmysteries. com

Ellis Vidler said...

Thanks, Nancy. It's exciting but nerve-wracking at the same time. I hope it sells too!