Tuesday, May 10, 2016

My Grand Experiment by Bobbi Junior

I am not one who seeks the limelight. Now, don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with seeking centre stage, especially when we have such a wonderful message to share with the world.

It's just not for me.

I did give it my best effort during my first few years as a serious writer. Agents and publishers, queries and synopsises, guesting and launching, tweeting and tooting.. I read and learned, signed up, joined up, and followed up… I tried it all.

My conclusion? I am an unasbashed combination of reluctance and stubbornness.  My writerly friends helped me come up with an appropriate logo for my brand – a Beige Amoeba.

I'm fine with that! Let me chat with people one on one, let me e-mail on a personal level. But after a couple years of journeying through the reverberations of a published book on a hot topic, I have with relief accepted the fact that while I am compelled to write, I am not compelled to speak, to market myself, or to promote my work.

And I know I’m not alone.

That settled, I now had a problem.

I had completed another book.

What do you do with a manuscript when you refuse to engage in any of the publication routes?

Stubborn? Yes. But I’m also pragmatic. If When The Bough Breaks needed to get out there, I believed the Lord would find a way, and he did. At a writers' conference a presenter uttered the magic word.


Did you know that Charles Dickens published The Pick Wick Papers by instalments in his local paper? Harriet Beecher Stowe did the same with Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

If it worked for them, why not for me? I already had a blog and 27 followers. I was off to a great start.

I announced my plan on TWG’s Facebook page. Friend NJ Lindquist sent a timely article giving cautions with this sort of publication. I weighed my plan against its points of concern. No worries. Chapters were already short, so suitable for blog posts. The book wasn’t evolving as I posted. It was already complete and had been professionally edited by friend and writer, Patricia Anne Elford, so no chance of veering outside the plan.

In the blogging world, pictures are important. Fellow writer and artist, Ramona Furst teamed with me to create a distinctive original image for each chapter.

Best of all, marketing could be left to God.

I spent a morning formatting and scheduling the first dozen chapters to go out every Saturday. Within a few weeks my e-mail list had more than doubled (Well, yeah, I started with 27 subscribers. But now I’m up to 60+. For a reluctant self-promoter, this is success.)

I share each new chapter on Facebook, others share it as well. When the Bough Breaks is available to the cyber audience as the Lord chooses.

An unexpected joy comes from the fact that people can comment on each chapter, in the moment. Some have e-mailed privately to share their own experience. For me, that camaraderie is a blessing.

So there you have it. Publication by instalments. For an introvert who wants nothing to do with marketing, but wants the story out there in the public realm, it’s a perfect solution. As for finding the right reader, our Lord can direct people to my blog as he pleases. That’s works for me.

Bobbi’s new book, When The Bough Breaks tells of the 1985 loss of a much wanted baby in. Published chapters and other publications are listed on her website www.bobbijunior.com. 


Peter Black said...

Bobbi, that's great - you discovered your plan and path! It must be quite a relief and a joy to feel relaxed or at rest in securing an appreciative, engaged and growing readership.~~+~~

Glynis said...

I am sure you have heard the 'marketing is part of writing' many times over. And I am sure you will get those who huff and puff at what you are doing. That said, I am privy to the inner workings of your book and a bit of your heart. I would say that getting up to 500 readers now is success! Well done O faithful one!

The story is equally heart wrenching yet triumphant [meant with great respect]. Wendy has made a huge difference in your life even after a mere 37 hours of earthly breath. I am moved by each chapter. I can't wait to see it in print! ;)
Well done.

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