Transparency in Self-Publishing Series: Marketing

Good morning, everyone!

3 weeks until the release of Forged in Dreams and Magick! {{{vibrates}}}

Okay, on to the actual post. What?
That was a stellar marketing plug. ;)

Today’s post should truly be entitled “Author Platform, Social Media, and Promotion. Oh. My.”

Last week in my Transparency in Self-Publishing Series, I talked about the fourth, but no less important, element in the components of a successful book, The Price of a Book. Those elements in a nutshell are a great story, compelling description, eye-catching cover, sweet-spot price.

There is, however, a fifth element:

Marketing.

In The Price of a Book, when I referenced the college class taken the last semester of obtaining my BSBA, I neglected to mention the emphasis of my study. I had no idea at eighteen what I wanted to do with my life, but I had a natural inclination toward business. At that tender age, I knew myself very well and accurately guessed my Type-A side would purr like a kitten with business. But what about the creative within me? It may have taken me another twenty-plus years to finally let the author prowling within me out of her cage, but I listened to the vibrations deep in my heart even back then.

So it should come as no surprise to any of you what major I chose.

Marketing.

To say I’ve been thinking of marketing ever since I’ve been writing would be inaccurate. Observing how anything is brought to a consumer in a target market is something I’ve done intrinsically for decades. Only when I’d finished the draft of my manuscript, and had something to sell that a reader might actually be interested in, did I let my attention drift toward marketing in the book industry.

I’m no expert. In fact, on an interview last month with Debra at Words from across the Ocean I shared my motto. Formulated on the powder-covered slopes of a ski run, but deeply branded as the underlying philosophy to my life, it’s a phrase I repeat to myself often:

Always the student, seeking to master.

As someone constantly learning and evolving, below are marketing nuggets of thought and insight I’ve discovered along the journey thus far . . .

Write It and They Will Come

Can you just slap your book up onto Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo the moment the ink dries on the page? Sure.

The more important question is . . . should you?

Well, if you subscribe to the “if you build it, they will come” Field of Dreams notion , I hope you’ve erected a shining new baseball field in the middle of a spiritual cornfield gateway.

Not sure? Pray for a miracle then. Or keep reading . . .

Ethics in Marketing

One enormous issue I had in my marketing classes involved the ethics of marketing. I’m sure it had a heavy hand in my choice NOT to take a job in marketing or sales.

To be a master in marketing, you must convince a consumer who had no idea about your product that they need your product and want to buy your product, whether or not they actually do. That my friends, is Marketing 101.

The crass way it’s looked at in business is underscored by a phrase I heard later from a co-worker who said she knew she’d done her job right when she could “tell someone to go to hell and make them look forward to the ride.”

Further underlining the success of marketing in our society is the dumbed-down commercials on television. Although we mostly mute them now, whenever a marketer has chosen to emulate idiots as consumers, I always say to my husband, “Gee, I wonder who their target market is.” It sure as hell wasn’t us!

In case you hadn’t picked up on my brief soap-box sidetrack with derision-filled undertones, I don’t subscribe to those notions . . .

Your Book as a Product to Sell

Instead of hawking something you don’t believe in, create an item of worth before you ever think of selling it.

Let me repeat that.

Create an item of worth.

I could be soap-boxing it again, but the point is valid. The book industry is crowded with lots of authors churning out books to make a dollar. It’s fueled by success stories of those who slapped together a book filled with bad grammar, poor editing, and thrown out there, but lucky them, its subject matter is so HOT it sells like a new shipment of Cabbage Patch kids days before Christmas in 1983 to a pack of rabid wolves.

If your ear is to the ground on Goodreads and Twitter, it’s happening in real time. Readers describe these successful and addictive books as literary crack.

But if you’ve paid attention to any get-rich-quick scheme, they are short lived. The consumer moves on when the novelty wears off. Readers are no different. Grumblings of reader dissatisfaction are happening right now on Goodreads and Twitter. Bloggers are tired of reading the same old story regurgitated a billion . . . {coughs} . . . different ways. Fifty might just be their limit. ;)

Even so, reader frenzy is at an all time high. They are hungry and wanting the next great read. But in a field of new authors all wanting some of the money pouring out of the progressive slot machines, how will your book get noticed?

I have no crystal ball for you, my friends. All I can share with you is my belief.

When you put yourself out there, it’s forever. You’ve immortalized your words. When you pull forth something from the depths of your heart and soul, take the time to make the package you present to the world reflective of your work of art.

I believe writing is our immortality.

And with that thought in mind, if you hadn’t already picked up on my message, I will say again to all you authors out there, coming from not only an author, but from a reader who is looking for your book . . .

Create an item of worth.

Where, When and What to Start Marketing

Everywhere, early, and you are the correct answers.

Marketing begins within your spheres of influence. It’s all in who you know, your reach. That, my friends, is your author platform.

But with the advent of social media, our potential reach is astronomical. As I’m only one person, I started out with one social media platform at a time. Just over a year ago, I joined Twitter. A few months later, I created my Facebook author page and my TalkToTheShoe blog. At the end of last year, I joined Goodreads. Each platform has it’s nuances, and I’m still learning on both Facebook and Goodreads, but if you spend smart time there forming connections and reaching readers, the efforts you put forth will reap benefits in the long run.

With all good things, however, there are limits. We only have so much time as a writer. As a fledgling self-publishing writer, you wear all the hats. Be sure to allot plenty of time to get it all done. Don’t be in a hurry to have it all now. Lasting connections take time to grow. Give yourself all the time needed to plant a healthy garden, and the seeds you sow will flourish.

Here’s a little nugget for you, though. You aren’t marketing a book. You’re marketing a brand.

What is brand and when do you begin marketing it?

Your brand is who you are. It’s definable and oftentimes indefinable. Brand is everything you put out there about yourself. It includes your image, your product, your beliefs and ideals. Your brand is how you represent yourself to the public and to your market. Your brand actually creates your market, because it draws people in to you. Those who like who you are and how you represent yourself. Consumers who share similar likes and beliefs. Readers who absorb every word you say, because your writing touches their soul.

Brand takes a while to create. Be true to yourself, express who you are and how you want to portray yourself, and your brand will shine through.

My brand is that I’m an award-winning paranormal romance author. My bio shares that I’m a “poetic warrior” and I donate proceeds of the sales of my books to charities that fight human trafficking. My shoe avatar is my public “visual” image; people recognize my shoe everywhere I go: Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, my blog, comments on other blogs. A blogger friend of mine shared that when she was talking about me to her husband, he said, “The Shoe Girl” in identifying me. Yep. That’s me. Mission accomplished.

As you can see, opportunities abound to connect with others and present ourselves to our future readers. Start early and lay foundations. When you finally bring the book to market, you will have made wonderful friends, connected with great supporters, and gained faithful readers who can’t wait to read your upcoming books.

Social Media and How to Correctly Use It

Every social media platform is different. I think how you use each depends on what you want to say and how you can say it there.

Twitter

Twitter is a real-time interaction tool. It’s your fifteen seconds of fame. And in that fleeting moment when you’re trying to express yourself, if your followers don’t see you, you’re gone. Right?

Well, almost . . .

I’m dedicating an entire section on Twitter here, because there are smart ways to use the platform, and unfortunately, too many authors fall into the wrong ways.

Don’t abuse Twitter.

Twitter is the most amazing interactive social-media platform. Seconds after posting a Tweet, someone can talk back to you. You can have a conversation. If you’re lucky, like me, you make wonderful friends. Daily.

You won’t make friends on Twitter if you hawk your wares like a cheap booth vendor at a carnival. Vying for attention by blaring in an egotistic manner to “buy my book” will get you unfollowed. Fast. DM automated links to new followers to see your website (which sells your book)? Yep. Unfollowed. Schedule automated Tweets every few hours with links to where your book can be bought? Yep. Unfollowed.

The above described Twitter behavior is actually defined by Twitter as spam and can get your account suspended. Links in every Tweet and RTs only of people who have links in their Tweets? Also become spam from you when you’re RTing it on your timeline.

Have you ever heard of the term “flier blind”? When everyone pins bright flyers up on the bulletin board, soon people walking by stop seeing the flyers.

Your spammish buy-my-book Tweets are annoyingly bright flyers and your followers stopped paying attention the moment you posted your first one. And second one. And they unfollowed on the third one, if not sooner.

Engage on Twitter

Talk to people on Twitter. Tweet interesting or funny things about yourself. Engage others into conversation.

{whispers} Make sure everything you Tweet is in line with that “brand” thing we talked about earlier. No one wants to hear about your bathroom habits unless what you’re selling is something greater than Charmin, and you simply must describe its softness. But seriously, use your personal filters, people.

Speaking for the naturally shy crowd, I know from experience how hard it is to engage people on Twitter. It’s so much easier to wait for people to talk to you. Sometimes I catch myself lurking or talking without engaging. When I realize my shyness is ruling my Twitter behavior, I push myself to step outside of my comfort zone and talk to people on my timeline.

Do some people never talk back to me when I put my tender heart out there to speak to them? Sure. But many others do respond. When I reach out, I often express myself through humor, charm, or a caring sentiment, and I find being true to myself pulls others into conversation.

Sell Your Book Softly

Even with my marketing degree, I’m still uncomfortable “selling” my book. Perhaps it stems from the moral dilemma I had back in college of “convincing” someone to buy something they hadn’t known they needed. Even though I want them to discover my book and realize they needed it all along, they just had no idea until they stumbled across my masterpiece. :)

In looking for the best way to use Twitter to sell your book, what I’ve learned from reading articles and watching the behavior of best-selling authors is that selling your book softly results in many people taking notice.

How do you sell your book softly?

Talk about your book occasionally and mention it in intriguing ways to your followers. Use the RT feature to tout what others are saying about your book.

When you get a great review, share it with your followers. But do so only once or twice in any given day with the same review.

The rest of your Twitter timeline should be filled with you engaging your followers. When you use Twitter to truly connect with your followers, the rewards of building lasting relationships on Twitter’s real-time platform will grow exponentially and eventually transform into buzz about your book.

Blogging and Facebook

My blog, Facebook, and Goodreads are the only other social media I’ve ventured into and will likely be the only places I go.

Why am I limiting myself to only four social media platforms?

Because I’m an author, and writing is what I want to focus the majority of my time on.

I’m also a Type-A perfectionist who seems inclined toward obsessive-compulsive behaviors when it comes to social media. The tendency manifests itself into adult ADD of the worst kind.

Sound familiar? Before you know it, you only meant to be on social media for ten minutes, and by the time you made the rounds, it turned into two hours.

Yeah. So I try to blog once a week. Try to go to Facebook once a week to post that blog and reply to comments.

Goodreads? Well, that, my friends, is an entirely different matter. Goodreads is the newest frontier to me on social media . . .

Goodreads

I’m still learning the ropes over at Goodreads, but I’m liking very much what I’m experiencing over there. Goodreads is a mecca of a reading community where you can connect with other readers. In real time!

Goodreads seems very promising if used in an engaging manner to find readers with similar interest as yours.

So far on the marketing front, I’ve run a giveaway on Goodreads for signed copies my book of romantic poetry for charity, Utterly Loved. I’m now running a giveaway for signed copies of Forged in Dreams and Magick and intend to run one for Bound by Wish and Mistletoe starting later this week.

In addition to the giveaways, Goodreads has a nice “event” feature to broadcast to selected friends, or all of your friends, upcoming events such as cover reveals, blog tours, signings and releases.

Finally, and I can’t believe I have to say it again, Goodreads is a reading community, so be sure to engage people. Like their reviews. Comment on their postings.

What not to do? Send a message to a new friend that accepted that says “buy my book.”

Yep. I kid you not, happened to me a few days ago. As I’m carefully selecting and requesting friends who read and love the same books I read and love, I get a friend request from a male author. Seconds after I accept, I get a message from him that says “buy my book” in great detail and at exhaustive length. Baited, and unable to let it go, I engaged him in a conversation which resulted in him admitting that he doesn’t read in my genre and I don’t read in his. It wasted both of our time, and I unfriended him at the end of that conversation. We had nothing in common. Not even our marketing approach.

I’m no expert, but I am a consumer. I am a reader. I will respect my fellow readers on Goodreads. I’m there to share and talk with others about books I love to read with readers who love to read the same genres of books.

Am I going to let all of my Goodreads friends know when I release my debut book in three weeks? Absolutely. Will I let my blogger friends know when my holiday novella also goes up on NetGalley or when the promotional and ARC tour opens for the holiday novella? You bet I am. But as I’m only releasing two books this year, and the third not for another year, my event announcements will be rare and only done when appropriate.

Again, I’m a big proponent in selling your book softly.

Book Tours, Book Reviewers, and NetGalley

Four to six months (or earlier) before your expected book release, schedule a promotion and ARC review blog tour. Choose a tour company who has a large reach to the reading market you’re targeting. Having an expert handle the connections for you, and their instructing you on how you can help them help you, is worth every penny an expert tour company charges.

Once you secure a blog tour, reach out to other bloggers and book reviewers who might not participate in blog tours, or might not have noticed the tour invitation email. They may want to participate in the tour (I had many who decided to sign up for an AToMR Tour for the very first time because of my direct contact) or they may want to review the book directly. Either way, after you’ve carefully read a blogger’s review policy and tailored a contact specifically for them, even if they don’t accept your ARC for review right away, they will now be aware of your book for the future.

NetGalley is a surprising find. After checking with a couple of blogger friends on how they use NetGalley, I bit the experimental bullet and paid $399 for a single-title placement in their catalog with surprising results. My book has now been requested by over 100 reviewers, media professionals, booksellers, educators, and librarians. I’m still getting requests daily. But the gold-mine result to me is the reviews that are already on Goodreads because I chose to place my title on NetGalley. The continued exposure I receive by having it on NetGalley for its six month period more than pays for itself in marketing dividends.

For an additional $50 per title, I’ve also chosen to place both upcoming titles, Forged in Dreams and Magick and Bound by Wish and Mistletoe, in NetGalley’s Roundup email, which will feature about ten titles and be sent to all of its 93,000+ members.

KDP Select or Not?

The choice to become involved in KDP Select or not is a greater discussion than bears relevance within this marketing article. I am, however, making mention of the choice here, because the choice IS a marketing decision. It is also a distribution decision, a pricing decision, and an entire whole-business decision that I think should not be taken lightly or without great research and thought.

Just like with my decision about price having the reader in mind from the very beginning, so should your marketing. That said, KDP is a decision about your reader. It is making the decision about who gets to read your book, or more importantly who does not.

What the heck is KDP Select? Yes. Perhaps I should back up a second and insert an unbiased, but summarized and therefore understandable, definition here.

KDP Select is a feature a self-publishing author is offered on KDP when publishing their ebook. Amazon’s KDP lures the self-published author to their KDP Select program with the promise of a share of a pool of cash entitled the KDP Select Global Fund, which is $1.1 million for September 2013, when readers borrow books from their lending library. Plus they entice the author by offering to make the book available for free to readers for a limited time, which is a marketing tactic in and of itself. KDP also sells the author on having an expanded reach by distributing your books through their lending library.

Is there a catch? You bet. And it’s a costly one. You agree to exclusivity with Amazon’s KDP Select for your ebook for a period of 90 days.

Is that of benefit to you or your potential global readers? No.

Do you realize that Amazon holds approximately 60% of the market in reader purchases? That other 40% is an enormous slice of readership pie.

The methods some authors use with regard to the free feature vary, and I suppose may work for some authors, but at what cost to benefit ratio?

I’m going to end my discussion about the Select program here, because articles about the KDP feature abound if you look for them. My research on the subject existed mainly because I couldn’t understand why anyone would exclude a reader base. Surely the dollars they receive vastly outweighed the readers lost, right?

I couldn’t tell you. There was no definitive answer. In fact, some of the authors who addressed the reader exclusion called it a trade-off, but seemed to be relatively satisfied with their monetary results.

Ultimately, I believe I read those articles with a biased eye. When I keep the reader in mind with both price and marketing, I mean all readers. Although my mindset pertains to Kindle readers, as well it should with their lion’s share of the market, it also includes the equally important readers of Nooks, Kobos, Sony, and Apple and other tablet products. They make up 40% of the readership. If you exclude such a large share of people, especially when you’re making the first impression of releasing your book, you’ve limited your potential readership by sheer definition.

My opinion on KDP Select? It benefits KDP.

Marketing into the Release

Come along with me on the final journey into the upcoming release week and beyond . . .

Today marks exactly 3 weeks until the release of my award-winning debut in the Highland Legends Series, Forged in Dreams and Magick.

The marketing foundation has been laid. Lasting social connections have been made and are continuing to spark anew. A promotion event and ARC tour is scheduled. ARC copies have been sent to reviewers. Early reviews are posting on Goodreads, and thankfully they’re coming back in the 4, 4.5 and 5 star range. Reviewer requests for ARC copies that continue to come by email and on NetGalley are still being accepted and fulfilled.

Interviews, guest posts, and promotional posts are being written over the next few weeks, and I’m softly touting those reviews on Twitter in addition to supporting other authors and laughing and chatting with friends, readers and new followers.

In two weeks, the promotion event begins, with bloggers sharing carefully chosen excerpts, interviews, and a guest post or two. Copies of books will be given away.

I plan to visit every participating blog to comment and/or RT their post on Twitter, thanking them for their support and sharing in their excitement.

During the release week, while the ARC review tour is happening, I plan to comment on their blogs and thank them for their time in reading and reviewing the book.

Everywhere I can, my blog, Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads, I plan to comment, laugh, celebrate and commiserate right alongside my readers.

I write for the love of writing, but every decision I’ve made along the road to publishing has been with the reader in mind, and I intend to be and remain as connected to my readers as possible.

Also, mark your calendars! A special book launch party will happen on both Twitter and on a beloved blog, who has been a fervent supporter from my very first blog posts. I hope you join me for the upcoming event hosted by Bookish Temptations, scheduled Saturday, September 21st, 2013 at 7pm EST. Stay tuned for more details!

My husband reminded me to slow down and enjoy the promotion and launch of my first book, as it only happens once. Enormous gratitude to all of you for enjoying the incredible once-in-a-lifetime journey with me.

I hope you enjoyed today’s foray into marketing.

Do you have any thoughts or comments with regard to book marketing? What elements do you enjoy as an author or reader?

Thank you all for your continued support. Until next time . . .

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

Highland Legends Series: Book Titles Reveal

If you prefer a bit of historical in your romance, love to fall in love with medieval Highlanders, or wonder about those enigmatic Highland Picts, then you will find everything you’re looking for and more with my Highland Legends series.

My debut novel, and the first book in the series, is set to release this fall with the holiday novella releasing just before Thanksgiving.

Without further ado, below is the unveiling of all four titles in the series:

Highland Legends Series

Forged in Dreams and Magick
Bound by Wish and Mistletoe ~ a holiday novella
Born of Mist and Legend
Found in Flame and Moonlight

Be sure to follow me and friend me in all my usual hangouts for updates as the weeks progress!

Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Official Website

Meanwhile, I shall be working with an editor and cover designer…writing and tour planning! 

Lots of surprises are being planned for the next six months, including an excerpt, outtakes, and some very special interviews you won’t want to miss!

Until then…

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

On the Road to Published…

Hello, everyone!

In recent weeks I’ve been posting weather reports on Twitter from the Highlands.  Every morning before dawn, I race into the woods after my favorite alpha male characters and their feisty heroines, inking their adventures into stories to share with all of you.

If you hadn’t already noticed on either my website or my spirited Twitter posts, I write time-travel paranormal romances set mostly in the medieval Highlands of Scotland.

This fall, I’ll be bringing you the first story in the series.
{vibrates excitedly}

The 2013 Calendar

First Manuscript

The first award-winning manuscript in the series is nearly ready to publish.  Starting next week, I’ll be glued to my keyboard as I incorporate the insightful suggestions made by my beta readers.

In mid-April, the manuscript is going to a wonderful freelance editor.
{cringes, imagining a chainsaw ripping into my work of art} 

A creative summer will be filled with final edits, final proofing, cover art, and arranging a promotional tour.  

The first book is tentatively set for a September 2013 release date.

Holiday Novella

My early morning Twitter weather reports from Inverness, Scotland?

They’ve prepared me for the daily plunge into the snowy forests of the Highlands in a holiday novella I’m also penning for the series. 

Incorporating characters from all three of the longer novels, the novella will release in November of 2013.

Second Manuscript

Furious drafting of the second manuscript has begun.  While chasing after my characters to document their wild adventures, I’ve been typing two to three thousand words a day.

I anticipate an early 2014 release for the second book.

About the Stories

I’ve had such a blast combining my favorite genres–paranormal, romance, and the medieval Highlands–into my writing.  All the stories feature strong characters who go on a journey of self-discovery, finding unexpected love amid their turbulent adventures.

Many themes center on the difficulties in overcoming issues of trust and the rewards of learning acceptance.  Redemption will play a large role in the second and third novels of the series. 

Some of the stories will also highlight the great tragedy of human trafficking set within the timeframe of the stories.  The characters struggle with the grave injustice brought into their lives and learn to survive and thrive in spite of the darkness of their world.

The completed series will tell the stories of three siblings whose lives and clan are affected by a very unique kind of magick.
{refuses to give away spoilers} ;)

ARC Reviews and Blog Tours

Are you a book reviewer? 
Do you love paranormal romance, time-travel, or Highlander romances?

I’ve begun a list for ARC copies.  If you’re a book reviewer interested in reviewing the book for its release, and we’ve not yet spoken, please contact me via Twitter or by email.  I’d love to add you to the list.

If you participate on a blog or with a magazine and wish to be a part of any of the promotional tours, please email me your information and ideas.  I’d love to start building that list and calendar as well.

As I mentioned, I’m anticipating a release of the first book sometime in September 2013 and the novella sometime in November 2013, but will know firmer dates as the months progress.

Donations to Charities

In recent months, traveling along my own road of self-discovery, I’ve become a more selfless creature and strive to continue toward that end every day.

Both World Vision and Covenant House support efforts to fight human trafficking.  In November of 2012, the romantic poetry collection of Utterly Loved, with inspiring foreword by the incredible author and humanitarian Sylvain Reynard, was published to support those worthy charities.

With every other book I publish, a portion of the proceeds will go to an ever-growing list of charities in the hopes of raising awareness and increasing support for those that are lost in this world and in need of our love.

Final Thoughts

Now that I’m chronicling a rowdy clan of Highlanders, my weekly blog posts will transform into spontaneous musings.  I’ll occasionally wander out of the forest for a signal on my electronic devices.

My goals for the year are to get that first book into your hands by early fall and release that novella by the holidays.

Meanwhile, be sure to follow me on Twitter, where I try to say hello at least once or twice daily; “like” me on Facebook; and “friend” me on Goodreads.

Thank you for every bit of enthusiasm and support that you’ve given for my writing and for the charities I support.

Until the next blog post…
{disappears into the Highland mist, notepad and pen at the ready}

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

12 Days of Utterly Loved In Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway

Hello, everyone.

Thank you for helping make the Release Week of Utterly Loved with Foreword by Sylvain Reynard a success.  Due to your purchases for yourself and gifts for others, Utterly Loved remained a #1 Amazon Best Seller in New Releases Love Poems almost the entire week.

We have only just begun, my friends.

The mission of Utterly Loved is…

To share love with those who read it…
To inspire those to feel it…
To help those who desperately need it.

Join me in igniting a wildfire of purchases for Utterly Loved and donations for the charities Utterly Loved supports, World Vision and Covenant House.

The 12 Days of Utterly Loved in Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway

The 12 Days of Utterly Loved In Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway begins at 12:01am EST Saturday, December 8th and runs for 12 consecutive days.  Each day, a winner will be selected from the eligible entries by Random.org.

The Prizes…

Each day one lucky winner will receive two items:
~ A signed copy of Utterly Loved for which Sylvain Reynard has also offered to send signed bookplates.
~ A $25 Amazon Gift Card, large enough to buy copies of both Gabriel’s Inferno & Gabriel’s Rapture, for instance. ;)

Grand Prize Drawing (one winner from the 12 winners):
One very lucky winner will receive the Grand Prize ~ A Kindle Fire

11 Daily Ways To Enter, Rules & Requirements…

Each day is a separate contest and there are several ways to enter:
~ Buying a copy of Utterly Loved that day earns an entry
~ Donating to World Vision or Covenant House that day earns an entry (Donate to both that day? You get two entries.)
~ Tweet that day asking followers to buy Utterly Loved earns an entry (Tweet again every four hours for separate entries-6 total)
~ Facebook post asking friends to buy Utterly Loved earns an entry
~ Blog post asking others to purchase Utterly Loved earns an entry

11 possible entries each day. Please purchase and donate responsibly:  Give only what you can and share news of Utterly Loved to inspire others to do the same.  Together we will help those in need.

Help me count your entry. @ me on Twitter or comment below with:
~ A photo of that day’s purchase receipt of Utterly Loved
~ A photo of that day’s donation receipt to either charity
~ Tweet your promotion to buy Utterly Loved with my @ AND Amazon’s Utterly Loved Page
~ If your FB posts go to your Twitter timeline, @ me so I can see it.  If not, get creative…like screen shot and send me the pic… ;)
~ If you blog about Utterly Loved,  link this page and comment below so I know about it.

The requirements:
~ You must provide evidence of purchase, donation, Tweeting or FB posting to be eligible for that entry (see above.)
~ When you Tweet, FB or blog post, you must ask others to buy Utterly Loved and provide a link to the Amazon Purchase Page of Utterly Loved << (like this one)

Disclaimers:  Each daily giveaway runs for 24 hours beginning at 12:01am EST until midnight EST that day. The first day of the giveaway is Saturday, December 8, 2012 and the last day is December 19th, 2012.  Giveaway is international where allowed.  Winners of the 12 daily giveaways and the Grand Prize drawing will be chosen by Random.org. (All giveaway prizes, for this giveaway, and all the Release Week giveaways, are being donated by myself and Mr. Bastion.)

The bottom line? 

You help with every purchase.  You help by spreading the news of Utterly Loved so others purchase.   You help by donating to World Vision and Covenant House.  Your small acts of kindness make a world of difference.  Thank you for being a part of the difference.

Thank you for helping make the lost in this world feel… Utterly Loved.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

Buy Utterly Loved on Amazon

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

12 Reasons to Buy Utterly Loved ~ Plus Giveaway

Utterly Loved Book Cover

 

In the season of giving, where abundance trumps the daily grind, Utterly Loved has been released on Amazon to brighten your life and change the world.

 

Are you fond of lists for checking them twice?
Twelve reasons Utterly Loved is so nice…

1.   Charity funding. All Proceeds, less costs and taxes, go to World Vision and Covenant House.  The mission for Utterly Loved is to help those lost in the world, those who’ve never had a chance to know love, feel… Utterly Loved.

2.   New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard wrote the brilliant foreword on humanitarianism.

3.   The books make excellent gifts for your loved ones.

4.   There are 21 love poems… 14 have never been published before.

5.   23 inspirational quotes are sprinkled between the poems.

6.   Utterly Loved fits into a stocking… a big stocking…

7.   You’ll have the perfect holiday party exchange gift for under $10.

8.   It’s an Amazon #1 Best Seller. (All the cool elves are buying it.)

9.   The poems touch on all aspects of love.

10. Nature is threaded through many of the poems.

11.  The cover art rocks.

12. Charity awareness.  Every book you buy, every gift you give, every person you share the news of Utterly loved with, sends ripples of love globally.  Your small act will make a world of difference.

Utterly Loved went on sale on Amazon on November 29, 2012.  Due to the overwhelming support for the project, it skyrocketed to #1 New Releases Best Selling Love Poems, hit #4 New Releases Best Selling Poetry and hit #1 Best Selling Love Poems.

No dollar will ever line my pocket. All proceeds, less costs and taxes, will be donated to selected charities. So far, I’ve chosen World Vision and Covenant House.

I hope you find plenty of reasons to buy Utterly Loved.  Please tell all your social worlds and everyone you know about Utterly Loved.

Buy two copies. Buy twenty.

Standing together around the world we each do a small part to have a big impact. United we can help those who desperately need it to feel… Utterly Loved.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

Purchase Utterly Loved on Amazon

And now… For the signed copy giveaway…

There are several ways to enter. The more you participate, the more entries you will earn to win a signed copy of Utterly Loved.  There are 8 possible ways to enter.  Multiple entries are encouraged.

~ Comment below to share about your purchase of Utterly Loved.

~ Copy the below phrase and post onto Twitter or post any comment sharing about your purchase of Utterly Loved (you must include the hashtag #BuyUtterlyLoved)

     I bought Utterly Loved with Foreword by Sylvain Reynard. Romantic poetry with proceeds to charity. #BuyUtterlyLoved http://amzn.to/SsmarW

~  Tweet again at least 4 hours later with the same #BuyUtterlyLoved hashtag and you will earn one separate entry per every 4 hour Tweet.

~ Post on FB so the hashtag #BuyUtterlyLoved hashtag appears onto Twitter and earn another entry.

That’s 8 possible entries.

Disclaimers:  The contest runs for 24 hours on December 3rd, 2012 from 07:01am EST to December 4rd, 2012 at 07:01am EST.  Winner will need to email proof of purchase to receive the signed copy.  Giveaway is international where allowed.  Winner will be chosen by Random.org. 

The bottom line? 

You help with every purchase.  You help by spreading the news of Utterly Loved so others purchaseSmall acts of kindness make a world of difference.  Thank you for being a part of the difference.

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

Utterly Loved Release Day!

In true Utterly Loved whirlwind fashion, Utterly Loved with Foreword by Sylvain Reynard surprised us all with a release day less than ten hours after submission instead of 5-7 business days.

Please see the new page on this blog dedicated to Utterly Loved, which can also be accessed under Menu on the left sidebar.

On the page you will find the latest information about Utterly Loved, links to purchase the book, and links to the charities Utterly Loved will be helping.

Please share, like, and comment on the page.

Please share the news of Utterly Loved with all your social worlds.  Together we can make those in desperate need feel… Utterly Loved.

Thank you for all your help and support.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat Bastion

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

Utterly Loved Foreword Author… Sylvain Reynard

Utterly Loved Book Cover

 

Finally, the Utterly Loved news you’ve been patiently waiting for, and I’ve been keeping secret, can now be shared.

 

I’m humbly thrilled to announce that the foreword author for Utterly Loved is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author and true humanitarian who inspired so many aspects of Utterly Loved… Sylvain Reynard.

In the brilliant foreword of Utterly Loved, Sylvain Reynard eloquently captures the enormous need in the world and inspires abundant generosity like no one else can.

Please read the incredible story of what transpired in Utterly Loved Foreword Author Reveal at Bookish Temptations.

Stay tuned for a schedule of blog tour events and signed copy giveaways for Utterly Loved beginning December 1st as we head into an exciting release week!

Utterly Loved
Where not one dollar will ever line my pocket…
Where your involvement can change the world.

Your humble shoe,

Kat Bastion

© 2012 by Kat Bastion