About the author...

MWhere I’ll be:M

Birch Bay Public Market

Friday, May 10 through the end of summer, Cathy and I will be selling her hand-made soaps, lotions, and toiletries, along with my photography, note cards, calenders, books, etc.

Come see us!

Across the street from the C Shop

4825 Alderson Road, Birch Bay, Washington 98230


I had an automated blogroll here, powered by Google Reader, but Google, in its near-infinite lack of wisdom, killed Google Reader. Prior to this murder, all I had to do to put a blog on my blogroll (or to take it off) was to place it in a Reader folder called, appropriately enough, "blogroll" (or, of course, to remove it). I use The Old Reader now for following blogs, but it seems to have no way to something similar regarding the blogroll. If you know of a way to do this, please let me know.

My First Kickstarter Project

I will be releasing Blood Bonds (assuming all goes well) on the 1st of May.

Blood Bonds is a novel that attempts to deal with the invisible web of bonds we create between ourselves, that network that connects us to each other with lines of friendship, of love, of hate, of sex, of things as simple as the places we grow up and as complex as the blood that runs within us. I guess, then, Blood Bonds is yet another attempt to write about the same things I always write about.

Maybe I got it right this time.

I am going to be contracting with a PR firm to handle the processes press releases, of getting reviews, etc.

That, unfortunately, costs money. Up front. In my view, the ideal would be for a PR firm to take on such things for X percent of the profits over T time. And before you go and dip the pitchforks in the tar and get them all flaming nicely, consider this: For several years now, you’ve seen, in all the blogs about how to Do It Right, that authors must hire professional editors. You can’t do that yourself. You must hire a professional cover designer. You’re not an artist, you’re a writer. You must have your page design done by a professional.

But the marketing must be all your own. Attempt to hire someone to do that, and you’re selling out. You want to be taken care of. You’re being unrealistic. You’re offering a share of the proceeds of selling your home to the kid that cuts the grass.

Writing is a creative process, as are editing, cover design, and page layout. A writer is a creative person. Is it all that unreasonable to think that a writer might be able to edit? Or to design a cover? In fact, aren’t most creative types involved in more than one type of creativity?

Marketing is not, at its heart, a creative process. That’s no slur on marketing, it’s just a fact. It takes a whole nother set of skills. And yet it is certainly something that some people are good at and others are not. I am not.

Why not meld the strengths of both types, in order to make a book as successful as it can be? I’m not going to offer the neighborhood kid down the street 10% of the proceeds of selling my house, in exchange for cutting the grass, but that’s a bad analogy. Here’s a better one: What if you offered 10% of the monthly take on your motel to the landscape service that makes it look attractive? What if you offered 10% of your daily box office to the manager of your theater?

Creating the book is a finite process, with a start and a stop and a place to point and say “There, I’m done.” Of course you’re not going to offer a percentage of the take forever to a person who is involved in the creation of the book. But marketing is an ongoing process. To the extent that your marketing effort has any effect at all, it will have that effect exactly as long as you keep at it. Why in the world would a percentage of profits not be a good way to buy that service?

But I’m digressing a bit.

This post is supposed to be about marketing Blood Bonds in particular, and about how I am going to (try to) get the money to do it. Which is by using Kickstarter. I need $3,500.00. If you’re thinking “Wow! Way too much! That shouldn’t be more than $9.00! (or $900.00, or whatever), please save your arguments. I did the research, I made the decision, and I’m not changing my mind. Not this time around, anyway. If you feel this is too much, the solution is simple – don’t back my project.

But if you have read any of my books so far, if you are one of the many who have left me such great reviews on Amazon and elsewhere, if you’ve liked my work so far, please toss a coin or two my way. The project is worthwhile, the rewards are good, my thanks will be from the very deepest bottom of my charcoal-cinder heart! Smile (Oh, come on – you knew I had a heart of charcoal!)

The Kickstarter project is not live yet (still undergoing review to be sure I followed the rules),

but here’s a link to the preview:


(edited to say “Oops – wrong link!” And to fix it.)

Just don’t forget to go back in a day or two and toss some money in the pot.

(Ha! Like I have any intention of letting anybody forget!)

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