I was one of the presenters for The Muse Online Writers Conference, which included a week-long forum workshop, Developing Contacts to Promote Your Book. Each day had a specific topic and the participants really got into building their contact lists.
The whole point of these exercises is to get your brain working. You want to develop these lists while you are writing if at all possible! And as participants in the forum discovered, I’m a stickler for specifics. Generic answers (like ‘everyone’) don’t fly with me! If you are to effectively promote your book, you need specifics and details!
You can share some of your ideas below or copy & paste and work on your lists on your own time. But sharing a few ideas is fun, because it might help out someone else!
Establishing Physical Contacts
Where is your audience most likely so seek out your book or book’s subject matter?
List all bookstores you can physically reach - chains and independents. Keep in mind specialty book stores as well.
Make a list of libraries. If applicable, include schools and colleges.
Time to think beyond the bookstore!
Make a list of other retail outlet possibilities - gift shops, coffee shops, specialty stores, museums, etc. Get creative!
List all events, festivals, and club/organization meetings in your area or that you can reach.
If applicable, consider churches and church bookstores.
Brainstorm businesses and organization that might be interested in your book. What company or group would most benefit from your book?