Navigating the Book Launch with Angela Brown and Tea with Mistress Snark

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I took a trip over to Mistress Snark’s for tea yesterday. Pop on over and check it out HERE.

Lovely coincidence has the one and only Ghost Knight visiting Spacedock 19 today.

MP: YA science fiction and fantasy author, Angela Brown, recently released her novel, NeverLove and must still be recovering from her whirlwind tour. What a tour it was.

 Would you care for a drink, Angela?

AB: Why yes, yes I would :-)  Fuki plum wine would be most excellent or I wouldn’t mind trying a Star Trek Andorian Ale.  And thanks so much, Mary, for having me here today.

 MP:  Why not both? More than one drink is acceptable on Spacedock 19.

 You just finished a big, bad ( that’s meant in a complimentary way :) )book tour for NeverLove. First off, are you still breathing? :) Second, what are your initial impressions about touring?

AB: Well, I’m breathing but my fingernails did not survive the journey lol!  Nervous habit of biting my nails kicked into overdrive. But typing is a bit easier now. :-)  As for my initial impressions about blog touring, I’d have to say I started off intimidated. The idea of visiting other blogs to tell them and their readers about my book seemed such a daunting task. But I had a secret weapon. I partnered up with Gwen Gardner, author of Givin Up the Ghost. Facing the task of organizing and executing a blog tour with her by my side helped so much

MP:  Having another mind and hands would be very helpful. I believe you certainly got your message out. Did you approach blogs / blog owners you know, or did you branch out on the tour? How did you pick where you’d stop?

AB: Early planning was the key.  Gwen and I discussed some of the higher traffic blog owners we were interested in visiting then narrowed that list down to the “short list” (hehe, like we’re all important lol!!)  We were very blessed in approaching them and getting positive responses. This was done at least a month and a half, almost two months before the blog tour began. Important to do that because higher traffic blogs fill their spots many weeks in advance. Then, we did the scariest part of all, we put our blog tour intentions out in the open, begging – erm – pleading – no, no, – um, requesting interested blog hosts to enter their information into a Mr. Linky. I have to say this: bloggers in the writing community ROCK!!  The response made me cry a couple of times because so many bloggers opened their blogs up to us. I wanted to cyber hug everyone!  We closed the linky after heart-warming reception so that we could limit the number of blogs we would visit.  In that way, we were able to guest post at all those who volunteered, no need to pick and choose.  Lucky us :-)

MP:  The writing community bloggers do rock. This is an essential service we provide for each other, isn’t it? How’d you come up with topics for all the guest posts you did? Sometimes I find that to be the hardest part.

AB: Coming up with various topics can be difficult. However, Gwen and I decided to take two-prong action. At the time we opened our tour up for volunteers, we also opened the door to preferred topics of discussion for the hosts. That way, if the host preferred to do an interview, they could shoot us the questions. If they preferred certain things, such as character sketches, dream casts, interview with a character, etc., we could oblige that preference. Once we had the preferences down, Gwen and I brainstormed other areas that weren’t directly requested already. Also, we decided that we wanted to set the tone for a fun and humorous tour, which enabled us to angle our topics to provide that chance. In addition, we focused on the utilization of our characters for as many tour posts as possible, which is how we ended up with a priest and a ghost madam doing a “show” at a post or the secondary character, Pam, from Neverlove, sidling up to blogger EJ Wesley in the hopes of “kissing” his soul from him :-) Poor EJ. He took it all in stride.

MP:  lol  The fun came through loud and clear in all the posts you and Gwen did, which made them really entertaining to read. What did you learn from the launch? What would you do the same and what would you do differently next time?

AB: Glad you enjoyed them :-) That was really important to both me and Gwen.  As for lessons learned, I learned that working with someone was far better than doing it on my own. Sure, I could have done things by myself, but having a partner was the best. I didn’t go into the numbers because I didn’t want to throw myself into some dramatic “I’ve been forsaken” mode. That was a good idea since even a successful blog tour where people love the posts isn’t a guarantee for loads of sales. I also learned that time is essential, which is the one thing I may consider doing differently next time. As our “blast off” tour, the amount of time we toured was pretty decent, approximately 3 weeks. Next time, I would shorten the time frame so that readers won’t become burned out by us being all over the blogosphere so much. I’m glad to have readers and other bloggers love us, just don’t want to wear out our welcome lol!!!

MP:  I don’t think you should worry about wearing out your welcome. That initial big splash helps a writer out by letting people know you’re out there. You and Gwen did a great job at that. Any other words of advice for touring authors?

AB: Thanks, Mary *sending a high five to my partner, Gwen*

As for a word of advice to touring authors, I’d say be flexible and keep an open heart to forgive. Gwen and I are hoping our tour appeared completely flawless. Strived for that. But there were slight bumps here and there with a few guest posts. Nothing done intentionally, but sometimes things happen. Accept what you can control and make the very best of it. 

MP:  Very wise words, Angela. I hope you’ll come back some time and we’ll chat some more. Or joust. :D

Check out NeverLove!

For seventeen-year-old Abigail, one rash decision leads to an unexpected chance for redemption. At V’Salicus Academy, a unique institute where she trains to become an agent of heaven, she struggles with the pain of her past, the changes of the present and accepts a loveless future until her path – and heart – crosses with Basil’s.

Basil’s off-chance slip of the tongue binds him to a life of servitude to the Devourer, the master of hell. His existence has no upside until a chance meeting with Abigail brings new perspective.

Keeping the truth of their present lives from each other brings disaster when secrets are brought to light and the life of Abigail’s mentor is put on the line.

Can Abigail and Basil save her mentor and salvage their love amid the chaos? Or will they lose it all, destined forever to NEVERLOVE?

Buy links: Amazon.com, Amazon.fr, Amazon.de, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon paperback, B&N

And if you don’t know Angela yet, you’re missing out. Visit her at her blog Angela Brown in the Pursuit of Publishness: http://publishness.blogspot.com/

Come visit me at Mistress Snark’s tea!

And if you’re interested in brainstorming and sometimes talking about nothing, we’re hanging out at Grogz on FB. Feel free to join us. #grogz will also be the twitter hashtag for next year’s Ren/Fantasy Fair extravaganza. Costumes welcome.

Any questions / comments on book launches? Oh look! We had a whole conversation without Ren Speak.

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24 Responses to Navigating the Book Launch with Angela Brown and Tea with Mistress Snark

  1. Thanks so much for having me for the chat today. Love Spacedock 19. Going to enjoy your tea with Mistress Snark :-)

  2. Mary, your Ms. Snark interview was a riot!
    Angela, you and Gwen did a fantastic job with your tour. Many people said the post you did for my blog was the best guest spot ever. You guys rocked!

  3. Thanks, Alex. That was a fun post to put together too. Glad everyone enjoyed it :-)

  4. Angela is such a fun person to know! I didn’t meet her until she morphed into Ghost Knight. ;) The Mistress Snark is now casting her eye on Angela…bwahaha!

  5. I totally agree that the posts I came across on this tour were engaging & fun. Well done! Great advice to not worry about those things we can’t control.

  6. Angela and Gwen’s tour was one of the best I’ve seen, so well done! It’s great to read Angela’s advice. Heading over to read the snark now. :)

  7. Thanks for this wonderful interview! I’m planning a book blog tour for February and it’s helpful to read about the experiences that Gwen and Angela had. Their blog tour was really well done – even with the small mistakes (I think I made one of those, sorry).

  8. Love that pic of Angela. She looks like someone who really knows how to live!

  9. Angela, it’s always a pleasure to chat with you. Thanks for gracing us with your sage advice.

    Mistress Snark’s was a riot to do, Alex. Angela and Gwen did rock it.

    She is quite lovely even with all that armor on, Laura.

    They were very fun, Nicki.

    I was quite interested to pick at her nuggets of knowledge, Julie.

    Get visible, Tyrean. That’s the whole point of a launch and tour. Will be glad to host you.

    Her vivaciousness does come through in the photo, Suze. It’s a very lovely image.

  10. Oooh, I’m a secret weapon! (Notice how I latched on to that, lol?) You are the best touring partner ever, and I adore you, Angela Brown! I agree about the length of the tour. It was a bit long and I’m sure people were tired of seeing us everywhere they went, lol!

  11. Hey Laura, have Mistress Snark hit me up at tomewriter@gmail.com and see what kind of damage – erm – word dancing we can conjure lol!

    Nicki, in embracing the lack of control for certain things, it was sort of freeing. Gives the chance to really hone your efforts on what you CAN control.

    Thanks so much for the compliment, Julie. Now I’m all blusing. Wait, the Ghost Knight isn’t supposed to blush lol!! But I’m humbled and honored everyone enjoyed our tour.

    Tyrean, echoing Mary, know that you have a spot with the Partners in ParnamorYA when your time comes :-)

    Thanks, Suze. I’m learning more and more to enjoy this life since it’s the only one I got. If I had others, I don’t remember them and if I get another, I probably won’t remember this one, so better make it count lol!

    Gwen, Yes you ARE a secret weapon Slap-a-Pow!! Adoration right back atcha :-)

  12. Always plan early for a book tour! I’ve had to set dates 5 months in advance before.

    Angela, your photo is delightful – you look so cheery.

  13. loved that interview! and i will be heeding this advice soon! thanks! cheers!

  14. Those two were everywhere! What a book blitz. I really hope it paid dividends for them too. And neat idea to pair up and tackle the blogs together.

  15. I think you and Gwen had one of the more successful tours I’ve ever seen. I saw you ladies everywhere! :)

  16. Gwen is a formidable secret weapon.

    These days it seem to be more true, Diane. It’s getting busy.

    My door is always open for you, Tara.

    It was a wonderful blitz, LG. I’m sure we’ll all be hosting yours soon. :D

    They did a great job, Libby. Admirable.

    Miranda Hardy says:

    I’m happy the blog tour was a success for Angela. Sounds like a daunting and nerve racking endeavor.

  17. What great advice, Angela. Thanks so much for sharing!

  18. I’m happy for Angela and Gwen, too, Miranda. They made it look easy.

    It was kind of her to share her wisdom, Gae-Lynn.

  19. What a fabulous interview! I’m feeling those blog tour jitters right now. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us, Angela. And nice seeing you as always, Mary.

  20. Angela and Gwen are my blog tour inspiration. They truly had a wonderful tour, with every stop being different than the last. They know how to maintain freshness and interest. Planning way in advance is a great idea.

  21. Mary – Loved your interview with Mistress Snark! Good to know about the punch :)

    Hi, Angela – I loved having you and Gwen on my blog. Y’all are welcome back any time!

  22. You’ll do great, Christine. You have a great product.

    They are an inspiration, Medeia. Makes me think that partnering up may be the way to go.

    Thank you, Carol. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

  23. Sounds like it was very successful book launch! Well done :)