Sometime on March 15, the Authors for Indies website will go live. I say ‘sometime’ because I’m in New Zealand at the moment, so coordinating things is a bit interesting.
Here’s the latest: marketing, guest blogs, and statistics:
Website becomes customer-facing on March 15: until now the website has been intended for authors and bookstores. Now we’re ready to market to readers and the media. This means sign-up forms, FAQs, and information for authors and bookstores get moved into the ‘Authors & Stores Resources’ page.
Guest blogs: Guy Gavriel Kay, Charles de Lint, Terry Fallis, Drew Hayden Taylor, Carrianne Leung, Susan Juby, June Hutton and others will blog about what indie bookstores mean to them. We’ve also invited a few bookstore managers to guest blog !! We’re lining up all this up so that you have interesting content to help promote Authors for Indies.
What you can do: This is all stuff you can post and tweet to help promote the event. You can also write your own blog about Authors for Indies, why you’re supporting it, post and tweet.
Social media: The wonderful Lesley Fletcher from the Retail Council of Canada is managing our social media and will be posting and tweeting information about the event.
Twitter account : @Authors4Indies. Hashtag for is: #AuthorsForIndies.
Facebook community page : https://www.facebook.com/AuthorsforIndies
Bookstores: We will provide some Facebook posts and tweets that you can share on your own page, as well as some samples of tweets you can use for your own event. Follow us on social media for shareable/promotional material.
Everybody: Please follow us on Twitter and LIKE our Facebook page. When you LIKE on Facebook remember to set ‘Get notifications’ so that you see posts on your Facebook news feed. Share, like, and retweet posts to your friends and followers.
Online ads: GEIST magazine has kindly offered to run online ads for us on their website and in their eNewsletter. In addition to the ads, GEIST will be shipping copies of their upcoming issue to selected bookstores. Stores are welcome to give away copies to customers on May 2.
Bookseller resources: On the new website you will find downloadable files for posters, icons, and a press release (thank you HarperCollins and Dundurn!)
Media outreach: our amazing media coordinator Susannah Ames is pitching to books and arts editors at the national and regional level: print, radio, TV. Hey, you gotta have a dream!
What you can do: Stores, amplify our efforts by pitching to your local news media. Everyone, if you have media contacts and can connect Susannah with them, send her an email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Statistics: As of today, more than 430 authors and 116 stores have signed up to participate. However only 49 stores have authors confirmed. Some stores are finding it challenging to attract authors, while others are turning down authors because they’re already juggling a full slate.
What authors can do: This is Authors for Indies, so authors please take the initiative. Take a look at the list of stores still lacking author participation, particularly the ones located outside metropolitan areas. We do have a challenge in Canada because of distances.
What bookstores can do: Not all of us have cars! If an author is willing to travel for an hour or so to get to your store, perhaps there’s some way to organize a lift, car pool, or help out with travel costs.
As you can see, the team has been working hard to make it easier for everyone to promote the event. We’re counting on your continued support to make this a success!