Following a steady trickle of sales through Amazon and several copies sold directly from us, I took the bold step of emailing WHSmith and telling them about my book. Central to this email was the presence of a WHSmith store in my own town and the possibility of making something of a connection with a local author.
Much to my surprise, I was asked to send in a sample to the Head of Children’s Books for consideration. Presentation is the key to many things, so rather than send in a pile of paper, I decided instead to send them a complimentary copy, along with an accompanying letter that elaborated on my previous email. As yet, I have heard nothing back, but it may be that my book is working its way to the top of the pile for consideration. If nothing else, I have the satisfaction of knowing that a bit of initiative comes in handy.
With so many new books on the shelves these days, it occurred to me that more than a good cover and a catchy book blurb may be needed. For my book launch I produced 3 short readings which, along with the right type of music, I felt captured something of the atmosphere of the book. After adding a chapter photo to this file, I was able to produce something that could appeal to both the eye and the ear, and indeed that sends shivers down my own spine every time I hear them. As well as playing these on the screen during the launch, I have started putting them on to YouTube to give readers an idea of what to expect.
Here is the first of these dramatic extracts from Akea: https://youtu.be/ymIUBX_3AZY