Husbands and the Art of Selling at Signings

June 2005
by Barbara Berot

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When I made up my mind to self-publish, it was with a certain degree of innocent arrogance; I believed that if the book was good enough, it would sprout wings and soar above the others to that lofty roosting perch of fame. I soon discovered that my novel, When Europa Rode the Bull, was a different sort of bird, one of the flightless variety.

And flightless for many reasons. I am nobody special. I didn’t date a murderer or entertain the president in the Oval Office. I don’t have a name that people instantly recognize, and I’m not a whistleblower with titillating secrets to tell. I did, however, write a good book–not a great one, mind you, but a gripping page-turner that readers tell me they thoroughly enjoy. And while it seems at times that I am waddling along with the cumbersome gait of a penguin, I recognize that I have come a long way.

One part of the explanation is that, right out of the gate, I hired a publicist. My choice was limited by finances, but the gods must have been feeling generous that day; they gave me Deborah Ruriani at Smith Publicity, who not only loved my book but made it her personal crusade. Her efforts yielded TV and radio exposure for me, as well as entrée to the Barnes & Noble system. Her relentless pursuit of the next level not only made my novel a B&N book club selection but also got it a review in The Philadelphia Inquirer. Several book signings at selected B&N stores came next….IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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