Writers: Make audio one of the tools in the marketing chest

mainecrimewriters.com, October 4, 2016 http://mainecrimewri ... ting-chest

It’s no secret that authors these days have to be multi-taskers. No rest for the weary writer once the book is written.

Even the authors who have the best publishing deals have to be on social media, know how to market, make appearances. Those of us with smaller publishers have the same duties, only magnified in a lot of ways.

I’ve written here before about how every little thing we do as authors helps build the foundation for success. I never say no to an appearance request, make sure my social media accounts are active, visit libraries and book stores — you name it, I’ll do it.

I also wholeheartedly embraced the concept of audio versions of my books, though I don’t listen to audio books myself. I wrote here in July about how listening to the audio version of my first book, Cold Hard News, helped make me a better writer.

Now as the audio version of No News is Bad News, the second in the Bernie O’Dea series, nears the final production hurdle, I’m also grateful simply for one more way to bring my books to readers.

I am lucky that I own the audio rights to my books. I’m more than lucky that when I went on ACX.com to explore how to get an audio book made, I came across the perfect narrator and producer, exactly what I wanted. Trudi Knoedler lives in California and I live in Maine, but we certainly are right with each other on how my books should sound.

As with my last blog post on the topic, I won’t go into all the nuts and bolts. Dale Phillips’blog post from 2013 explains it much better than I could.

The big benefit for me is that I’ve found that audio reaches readers that print and ebooks may not. I had a long conversation with a fan at an event last summer who was thrilled that Cold Hard News was on audio. It surprised me how fervent she was about it.

More recently, I got a nice note from Melanie Coombs, the librarian at MacArthur Library in Biddeford, saying how much she loved the audio of Cold Hard News and asking whenNo News is Bad News would be out. She enjoys listening to books and took the time out to listen to mine and then to let me know what she thought. She’s also letting patrons of her library know. She also took the time to compliment the job Trudi did with the narration.

A lot of what we do as writers is tough and there doesn’t always seem to be a lot of payoff. I’ve always said, and I sincerely believe, that every little thing adds to the whole. I decided to give audio a shot because — why not? — the books were written and Trudi would do all the work. But I’ve come to realize that it meant way more than that.

I’m looking forward to the audio version of No News is Bad News being available later this month. I put some of my rudimentary digital skills to work to make a little video of a sample to promote it. No, I know, that two-minute video won’t win any Oscars. But every little bit helps.

Check it out and let me know what you think. Click here to watch the video.

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EVENTS: Maureen will be one of 10 authors reading from their works at Noir at the Bar, 3-5 p.m., Sunday, November 6, at Bull Feeney’s in Portland. Also reading will be Brenda Buchanan, Gayle Lynds, Gerry Boyle, Jen Blood, Barb Ross, Lea Wait, Bruce Coffin, Jessie Crocker, Brendan Rielly, Dick Cass and more!. Kelly’s Books to Go will be selling books at the event by all of those who are reading. Come on over for a great afternoon!

Maureen Milliken is the author of the Bernie O’Dea mystery series. Follow her on Twitter at@mmilliken47 and like her Facebook page at Maureen Milliken mysteries. Sign up for email updates at maureenmilliken.com.