Tonight I attended a seminar at the Victorian Writers Centre with Kirsty Wilson, publicist for TEXT. She gave us the rundown on the marketing of not just your writing but yourself. I'm the shy-retiring type (as those who know me would attest) so this part of selling your book to the publisher has always freaked me out a little bit...in fact it's always freaked me out way more than a little bit.
I've had 4 yrs of getting used to the fact that, if I successfully sell my novel, I will have to wiggle my bum (metaphorically speaking - the gospel according to John!) for the media. So that I don't look like a total nob-head when the time comes, I've been going up to strangers, usually other writers I haven't officially met yet, and introducing myself. I figure it's gonna take me 2 to 3 yrs to write this novel (hell that's a long time!) and by the time it's good to go I will have gotten past the simple introductions and be on to having sustained conversations...that's the plan anyway.
When I first met Toni Jordan at the 2008 Melbourne Writers Festival (remember to book your tickets early!) I asked her if it had taken her long to develop her public speaking style. If she had perhaps started off shaky, then improved. She disappointed me (and apologised for it - she really is lovely) by telling me it was all her and she could talk under water. As I'm not the best swimmer, I'll settle for being able to string more than two meaningful sentences together.
I'm getting in some practice on Fri. I'm being interviewed as a result of winning the Herb Thomas Memorial Trust Award for 2009. Got the call last week. Let's hope my feet stay on the ground and don't wind up in my mouth...