Monday, October 24, 2016

Don't Buy My Book!

Yes, I’m posting five times this month! It’s been a busy month with lots of book releases. Today I welcome the wit and wisdom of Roland Yeomans.

Welcome to the latest stop in my DON’T BUY MY BOOK! Blog Tour.

   Don’t Buy My Book? Am I kidding? All Indie Authors want their books bought, right?
   Yet, I bet you’ve often felt as I have: like the first slice of bread in the loaf; everyone touches you, but no one wants you.

  Rejected, Abandoned, Unwanted.
   It is a congested marketplace out there and only getting more crowded each month. In a crowded market, Brand stands out where individual titles may not.
   We need to build our books around a Brand:
   (Our style of spinning a story, the unique twist we give to each book that tells readers: “Oh, this is a Yeomans kind of Story: the zinging dialogue, the unpredictability of the plot, the epic scale to the action.)
   Know what 3 words are on the office wall facing the writers of the TV show, The Flash?

So Don’t Buy My Book; Buy My Brand.
   What is my Brand?

A dichotomy of images –
   an Old West Texas Ranger fighting Sidhe in England and Dragons over the Eiffel Tower:

Inserting Fantastical Elements in historical tales –
   Warring Vampire Kingdoms interrupting the maiden voyage of the first Air/Steamship.

Startling Versions of Legendary People –
   11 year old Nicola Tesla; an insane Abraham Lincoln, white supremacist; a vampire, two-faced Benjamin Franklin; a mysterious Greek physician who turns out to be an immortal Saint Luke; and a mischievous young Mark Twain making passes at every pretty lady he meets – even unknowingly to a famous lesbian!

Reader Discussion Sections in the back of the Books –
   There are book clubs still out there and Goodreads as well. Why not encourage discussion of our books to spark further sales?

Distinct Twist to A Genre –
   It takes at least 3 books to gain traction to your Brand. I stumbled into Steampunk with my 1895 Egyptian Historical Fantasies (DEATH IN THE HOUSE OF LIFE & THE STARS BLEED AT MIDNIGHT).
   I purposely twisted the Steampunk genre with THE NOT-SO-INNOCENTS ABROAD and now with

Chapter 20: RED WEDDING
   “I hate violence as only a man who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity.”- Samuel McCord
   The darkness beckoned. I stiffened. Children laughing. There were children down below. I went cold, my face turning to flint.
   Baptiste smiled like a mortician reading of a coming plague. “All know how the safety of children is paramount to The McCord.”
   Lucanus growled, “Sometimes when you stack the deck, werewolf, the cards do not play as you expect.”
   Baptiste laughed, “See? I go down the stairs before you to light the way.”
   He stepped down into the opening. I heard the striking of flint against stone. Then, the flickering light of a torch descended before us. I dropped the Whisper of the Winds I usually wore to conceal my Orenda and followed him.
   Meilori, my wife, whispered behind me, “Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory.”
   Ralph Waldo Emerson sighed further back, “To know and not to do is not to know at all.”
   Sammy grumbled up closer to me, “Thank you so much for sharing that round-robin with us, poet.”
   Nicola said, “Don’t worry, Mr. Clemens. We shall do the best we can with this situation. And if we are doing the best we can, worrying will not make it any better, will it?”
   Emerson said, “Why those could have been my words, lad.”
   Horace Greely snorted, “Do not worry, sir. In the fortnight, you will quote them as if they were. And cad that I am, I will print them.”
   High Fae Queen Oyggia said, “Mortals plan, the Universe laughs, and the survivors weep.”
   Benjamin Franklin sniped as we descended into near darkness. “Madame, remind me again who is wearing the Collar of Restraint from Elohim?”
   Nicola bent to pet his cat, Macak. “Do not growl so. You will not have to defend me. The good captain has things in hand.”
   General Sherman growled, “Oh, if my Colt had not been taken by that infernal Ningyo bodyguard, Ice.” Lincoln said, “A fact of which I am glad. Death by ricochet would just add insult to a mortal wound.”
   And with that bit of whimsy, all of us found ourselves in a huge chamber whose walls fluttered with scarlet silk hangings. Torches were but few that lined the walls. I could but barely make out robed shapes milling about. I flicked my eyes up. Small balconies with dark-faced archers, arrows notched and ready. I scowled. It was what generals called a “Kill Box.” Sherman’s beady eyes seemed just as pleased as I felt … which meant not at all.
   Baptiste called out to me from the far corner. “They who walk the night are not all men. Ka nama kaa lajerama!”
   Sammy snorted, “And a Gesundheit to you, too.”

What are you waiting for? Buy My Book! I know what the name of my tour is. But I changed my mind. I am a man, after all!

   Roland Yeomans was born in Detroit, Michigan. But his last memories of that city are hub-caps and kneecaps since, at the age of seven, he followed the free food when his parents moved to Lafayette, Louisiana. The hitch-hiking after their speeding car from state to state was a real adventure. Once in Louisiana, Roland learned strange new ways of pronouncing David and Richard when they were last names. And it was not a pleasant sight when he pronounced Comeaux for the first time.
   He has a Bachelor’s degree in English Education and a Master’s degree in Psychology. He has been a teacher, counselor, book store owner, and even a pirate since he once worked at a tax preparation firm.
   So far he has written thirty-four books. You can find Roland at his web page or at his private table in Meilori’s. The web page is safer to visit. But if you insist on visiting Meilori’s, bring a friend who runs slower than you.

   Find The Not-So-Innocents at Large at Amazon in ebook and print. You can view all of Roland’s books on his Amazon Author Page.


Natalie Aguirre said...

Glad you found your brand, Roland. You're so right that it is hard to stand out. Congrats on your book!

Mason Canyon said...

I've never thought about being drawn to a brand when it comes to reading, but you do have a point there Roland. Congrats on your release and your unique twist on a blog tour.

Karen Lange said...

Building your brand is so important. Thanks for the tips, Roland. Wishing you well.

Diane, thanks for hosting. Have a great week!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Encouraging reader discussions in the back of the book. Now that's a smart idea.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Your analogy about the first slice of bread made me chuckle.
Clever post. Many happy sales!

Christine Rains said...

Hilariously wonderful post! Branding the author is so important. Happy sales to you!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Writing more than one book is so important for getting your name out there. Love the Star Trek book.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Diane and Roland ... good to see you here with your ideas - we need to be different and stand out from the crowd ... via branding, but via our voice ... and then adding in those extras ...

You definitely stand out and now we can see you! Cheers Hilary

Roland D. Yeomans said...

As with Lovecraft and L'Amour my brand found me! :-)

When we think King or Koontz or Sparks you think of their brand and are drawn to it. Or not. :-)

Isn't Diane great to do this for me?

It just seemed one more way to connect to readers and perhaps have them talk about ME with others. :-)

Glad I could add a chuckle to your day. Yes, all too often I feel like that first slice of bread!! Ouch.

I hoped to make my friends smile or chuckle with this post while still being informative. Thanks for the well wishes!

More than one book helps with our back-list and with having folks feel good about following our endeavors,right? Now, if only I had the ENTERPRISE to go with that shirt!!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Yep, that's me -- standing out there, hoping to be struck with the lightning of getting noticed! Thanks for following me here. :-)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Branding is really important for an author.

Thank you to everyone who stopped by today.

Chrys Fey said...

I think I've built a pretty decent brand, but it's hard to get more people to find out about it. That's the key.

Congrats, Roland!

Bish Denham said...

I guess I've got a brand now... :) And just when I find out my next novel will turn everything on it's head!

Congratulations, Roland!

shelly said...

I'm scattered. Too prolific for my own good. Love this idea.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thanks for having me!

Yes, a consistent brand is important, but it really means little if you do not grab the internet's spotlight somehow. :-(

Brand does not necessarily mean genre but the style and quality of the prose in each of our books I think. :-)

Our way of writing is often our Brand in the mind of the reader I hope!

Sandra Cox said...

Fascinating excerpt.
Wishing you much success, Roland.

Juneta key said...

Congrats on book and great advice.
Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

cleemckenzie said...

It's definitely a unique brand! I love it.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thank you for the compliment. :-)

I try to help with my guest posts!

It is unique at least!! :-) I am happy you enjoy my Brand! said...

Roland, it's so nice to actually virtually see you! Your wisdom, creativity, and heart are unending. Much more success and all good things to you.

Thank you, Diane and Roland.

Dean K Miller said...

Roland: Congrats on staying the course and finding your place. However, I think, as a man, you changed your mind when a woman told you it was ok!

Stephen Tremp said...

David and I have something in common as were were both born in the Wolverine State. Funny thing is there has been a single spotting recently of a lone wolverine after 200 years of no sightings.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

I finally decided to show my face after all these years. I mean, it only worked for the Phantom of the Opera for just so long. Thanks for the nice words!

Thanks for the congrats. But it must be my work-fatigued mind, but I cannot get your change-my-mind joke. Still, if you knew my powerhouse best friend, Sandra, then you would know that even a male statue would consider changing his mind at her persistence! :-)

Roland D. Yeomans said...

I like to think the wolverines have been hiding from Man in Michigan. No one in their right mind corners one of those bad boys! Hello to a fellow Michiganian!!

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Congrats on your book. Don't buy a book is a strange brand but if it works for you, go right on ahead.

LD Masterson said...

Without multiple books out there, I'm trying to build a brand through short stories, although I wasn't really thinking about it as such. Thanks, Roland, and best of luck.

Helena said...

May your books sell by the thousands, Roland! You deserve so much success.

Tamara Narayan said...

Your brand is certainly unique and that is a good thing!

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

There's no doubt about it. You found your brand, Roland. Thank's for sharing this. I have a better understanding of branding. Now I just have apply what I've learned from you. Best of success with your novels and your brand. Nicola rocks.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

DON'T BUY MY BOOK! is not my brand, just my tongue-in-cheek name for the tour trying to publicize it. You have to admit that it is an eye-catching one. :-)

King and Raymond Chandler made brands of their names by doing short stories.

That is so nice of you to say. May your own two new books do really well!

Unique at least gets attention! :-)

Best of success with your own novels! Nicola Tesla is fun to write as an eleven year old. But he pops up as an adult in four other of my science-fantasies. :-)

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

It is difficult getting noticed in this crowded market. Building a brand helps a lot.

emaginette said...

It looks awesome. Good luck. :-)

Anna from elements of emaginette

Sandra Cox said...

Forgot to the Star Trek shirt:)

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Branding helps a bit all right. But being praised by Neil Gaiman on his blog would help even more,right?

Thank you! I'm glad you got so much from the conference!

I am a Trekkie from of old! :-)

nashvillecats2 said...

Excellent post Diane, I do love that title "Don't Buy My Book".
I don't need to announce that as a

H. R. Sinclair said...

Branding play with out subconscious I think. I'm not so good at it myself, but hope to get better.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

I was hoping for a little reverse psychology here! :-)

We are all learning as we go and grow!

Crystal Collier said...

That's an excellent point. When you do land loyal readers, it's because they're sold on your voice, which I guess is your brand.

Cherie Colyer said...

Great post. Buy my brand, our books are our brand. :)

Roland, congrats on your latest book!

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Love your sense of humor, Roland. Congratulatiolns on your latest book and all of the others. I need to work on my brand. Not quite sure what it is.

Anonymous said...

You always make me smile, Roland. Three books? I still have two more to go. I better get cracking!

Chemist Ken said...

I'm still working on figuring out exactly what my brand is. Not easy when you haven't finished a book yet.

Tyrean Martinson said...

I love this twist on the book blog tour!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Roland's idea of creating a brand is good.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Thirty-four books is impressive. I love the idea of selling a brand, not a book!

J Lenni Dorner said...

Fantastic way to talk about the value and importance of branding!
I knew that I'd have various books in me, so the brand I picked, besides my name, is "what are they." A common character link between my novel writing is that someone in the story always leaves the reader wondering what they are, exactly.
You did great with this article. Way to go.

Patricia Stoltey said...

I do appreciate those writers who've found their brand and are happy with their chosen genres and styles. I'll probably be experimenting with the new and unfamiliar the rest of my life with no brand, no groove.

DMS said...

So fun to see Roland here too! I have been enjoying seeing him and his latest book all over the blogosphere. :) Wishing him all the best!

Sandra Cox said...

Happy Halloween, Diane. Keep the cauldron boiling:)