I am a self-published author.
While some people consider this as ‘I couldn’t get a publishing deal’, I think of it as having my own little company.
I also have a number of friends who have their own companies. Mostly, these are small craft based companies which focus on a single thing. I know people who work in everything from Steampunk leather works to baby bibs.
Through my own hobby of cross stitching, I know a number of companies who design charts and make materials, etc. When I was approached by one of them, I realised a fantastic opportunity… Cross Hobby Marketing.
People who read often don’t only read. They have other hobbies. They knit, or they paint, or they go on bike rides at the weekend. So, why do we, as authors, spend so much time marketing to them on a book level?
It was KLT Charting and Jodyri Designs who contacted me. They are both friends (one is also family) and they loved Dead and Buryd. They wanted to do some designs based on it, and would I be okay with that?
Why would I NOT be okay with that?
Cross stitchers are obsessive! I know stitchers who have enough charts and designs to last them three life spans. If they like the designs, maybe they’ll buy the books. If they don’t buy the books, then my friend gets business. Maybe they’ll stitch it for a friend and give them a copy of the book with it?
Readers are obsessive. They devour everything they enjoy and come back wanting more. Fan fiction, role play, graphic design… The number of people who have tattoos based on their favourite books is astounding.
So, I very enthusiastically agreed, and on the 1st of May, the Out of Orbit charts were released by KLT Charting.
There are more, including a few ‘tag line’ charts, and a quote or two. More are going up throughout the month. Soon, Jodyri will be releasing a number of variegated threads and hand-dyed materials for people to stitch on, based on colour combinations found in the books.
The designs were released last week… and already, two people have completed charts, posting them on KLT Charting’s facebook page.
People are not only taking the time to read my books, they’re carrying them over into their other hobbies. I know that there are customers of these companies who may never have heard of my books if these designs hadn’t gone up, and now they’re buying my books at the same time as buying charts that help my friend.
Win win, I think!