Headshot-Small Hey all,

Greetings from Cat and Kregel Publications! When I came to work this morning, I was planning on writing this post about a completely different topic. But when I sat down at my desk, I did what every marketing manager does when she first arrives in the office—I opened my email. In hindsight, that probably wasn’t the best thing to do because I spent the next hour answering queries from ad reps, questions from coworkers, and quandaries from authors. One email in particular took me by surprise.

Written by a first-time author, the email was only a few sentences in length. Short. To the point. I like that. She was asking for advice on how to get her book into the hands of people who could help promote it. Influencers, I thought. Impressive. Since we only just finalized the title of her book and haven’t even finished designing a cover, I was impressed that the author was already thinking about a post-release promotion. It was the last sentence, however, that really caught my attention:

“Would you be willing to give me your thoughts on my list of endorfluencers.”

Her what now?

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Ava Pennington

Author, Ava Pennington

Hi, all – Ava Pennington here.

My last two posts were about planning a book launch party for my first book, One Year Alone with God: 366 Devotions on the Names of God. I’m not a marketing expert, but I learned as much as I could from those who are. The posts described the planning necessary for a successful launch party. In case you missed them, check out Planning a Launch Party – Part I and Part II.

Well, the party was a success! Almost 100 people came to celebrate with me and it was a special  time shared with precious friends. Still, the next time I plan a book launch party, there are things I will do differently. Here’s what worked – and what I would change…

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Sundin #D70 ©2008 Linda Johnson Photography web (2) Greetings from Sarah Sundin, all refreshed from a wonderful writers’ retreat in beautiful Monterey. Today I have the privilege of interviewing author Ava Pennington. Ava’s first book, One Year Alone with God was published by Revell in October 2010, but Ava also has a long list of magazine articles to her credit and two children’s books in the works.

Ava, how did you get into writing?

Ava Pennington

Author, Ava Pennington

I began writing as an extension of a teaching ministry. When I started writing as a serious pursuit, I had a passion to write non-fiction. However, the advice I received was that without a significant platform, I had little chance of being published. I had also developed a children’s picture book series, but was told that there was no longer a market for picture books. I dropped both projects and switched to writing fiction, but my heart wasn’t in it.

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How to Make Your Blog Tours More Successful

Headshot-Small An author recently asked me (Cat Hoort), “do blog tours really work?” I sat silent for a moment, wondering how to react.

I could be shocked: “What do you MEAN? Of course they work!”

I could be ambivalent: “Meh. Sometimes they do. Sometimes they don’t.”

I could be doubtful: “Not really. But we can keep our fingers crossed.”

I could be enthusiastic: “Absolutely! All the time. Every time!”

So which one is it?

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Sundin #D70 ©2008 Linda Johnson Photography web (2)

Greetings from Sarah Sundin on a crisp fall day that makes me want to cuddle up in a warm quilt – perhaps like one of the quilts author Diana Brandmeyer features on her website. Not only is she an extraordinary quilter, she’s a gifted writer with plenty to share with us today.Diana Brandmeyer

Diana, how did you get into writing?

Like many, I wrote stories when I was little, but it wasn’t until the birth of my second child I realized I could make a little money and share my faith with my stories. I started writing devotions for children, which led to taking a course from the Institute of Children’s Literature.

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