Valentine’s Day is behind us, so now we can all focus on… the next holiday? A book about President’s Day? St. Patrick’s Day? What is it with authors and a need to tie their books to a holiday or a season?
It’s not just authors, it’s everyone, and it’s called marketing. Every furniture store on the planet has a President’s Day Sale. So does every car dealership. It’s a gimmick, a marketing ploy, a way to draw customers – in an author’s case, readers – to their product. Come on, how many of you authors out there have been plotting a new Valentine’s Day story in your head, something you plan to write at some point over the next year, so that you can release it next January, in time for V Day 2015? It’s okay, you can admit it to me. Because I’ve been doing the same thing.
Partially, I’m sure, it’s just because we too get sucked into all the V Day marketing that is everywhere, all around us, and authors are utterly swayed by the world in which we live. We have to be, because we have to write books that will sell to readers, and readers exist in that world. Those ads are marketing to our readers, so we have to listen, pay attention, try to figure out what those readers want, so that we too can market to them, can sell them our stories.
Some authors will undoubtedly disagree with my reasoning. Some authors will insist they write for themselves and don’t care who likes their stories or if they are mainstream or will sell millions of copies. I’m okay with that. Everyone has a right to their opinion and everyone has a right to write the way they prefer, to write to whomever they prefer. Me? I want to write something that hundreds of thousands if not millions of readers will want to read, because I love what I write and want everyone else to, too – and I also want to make a living at this and frankly, the only way to do so is to write to what the readers want to read.
So on to the next holiday it is… How about leprechauns? Does anyone find leprechauns sexy? Do you think I could get a book done in time for St. Patrick’s Day? Well… There’s always next year.