Writing a book is only half the job; maybe only 25%. Marketing is the other part. Without marketing, no one is going to know about your book or buy it or read it.
So off I went to the Triangle this past weekend. First, I stopped at UNC-TV at Research Triangle to be interviewed by D.G. Martin for NC Now, a weeknight show. Now D.G. is best known for NC Bookwatch, a half-hour show where he interviews authors. I’ve always wanted to get on NC Bookwatch; it was like a “reach” goal but I never made it and now he’s no longer doing it. So what am I going to shoot for now?
That Friday evening, April 5, I gave a book presentation at Quail Ridge Books. Quail Ridge is the independent bookstore in Raleigh. Boy, can they attract readers and customers!
Katie Parry of History Press had come up from Charleston for the book event. She provided the food and wine. Over 110 people showed up, my personal best. The picture above is of Kate Dixon, Executive Director of Friends of the MST, me, and Katie Parry. Allen de Hart, the person most associated with the MST, also came. In my book, The Mountains-to-Sea Trail Across North Carolina, I call him the granddaddy of the MST.
Then on Sunday, I went to Glencoe Village, a restored village located north of Burlington. Lynn Pownell, who runs Rockworth House, a textile studio, invited me to give a talk at their gallery. It was a small but very enthusiastic audience.
Lynn outdid herself. She baked cookies in the shape of North Carolina with the MST running through it. How clever.
I drove over 550 miles. So what did I accomplish? I talked to many people about the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, encouraged a few to get out on the trail and put my book into a few more hands. Was it worth the effort, time and expense? Absolutely. When I think about writing a book, I know that I’ll have to market it extensively. Like I said, that’s much of the job.