Book Launch: Fireworks or Fizzled-Out?



The other day, I got a tweet. It was like, ‘Hey, Lemon Shark. I feel all ARGH! Is this normal for a book launch?’ And I was like, ‘Hmm… I’ve never done one but, yeah, I’d say it is.’

The question was from Lucy over at BlondeWriteMore. She’s publishing her first book (finally…ahem). It’s a long-awaited romcom sure to be a smash hit. Anyway, the lovely blonde writer was wondering my way and it got me thinking.

Yes, I’ve released a book. Two, actually, but I’ve never had a launch. It was more of a whisper. I actually worked one of my releases into a post script on my blog here. Yup: ‘P.S. I’ve got a new book out.’ Shame on me, I know.

While a lot of people get a rocket launcher and have the crowd count down to blast off, I have a sparkler in my hand and run about the yard on a balmy summer’s evening alone.

If I’m honest, it’s probably more like a stick of incense. The faint aroma of ‘new book’ wafting in the air, smoke swirling and curling in beautiful patterns that go completely unnoticed (unless you happen to be passing by).

No street team, no online marketing, no book tour. I’m not blasting through the blogosphere with my new book. I’m relaxing, drinking a beer, and watching my sparkler burn down and fizzle out.


Where are you on the days (or months) leading up to your release date? How do you announce your new book? Fireworks? Sparkler? Smoke signals?



45 thoughts on “Book Launch: Fireworks or Fizzled-Out?

    • Well, sparklers are pretty while they last. It’s fun running around with them, watching the tiny, handheld firework show. 🙂 But they don’t make much of an impact past the one holding it. I guess authors must get a rocket launcher to reach amazing readers like you. Thank you, Norah. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Somehow I saw your sparkle and am glad to have purchased and read your books. I am still in awe of your ability with fiction of few words. Your books are worth promoting.
    I am somewhere above a fizzle, in that I have fumbled a sorta launch but as it was only in my small circles, yeah fizzle. Or fuzzle. It’s never too late they say.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am so glad you saw the sparkle of my books. (And that you liked them.) Thanks, D. 🙂 Ah, yes. Promotion is a different animal. That could be another whole post. Book Launch vs Book Promo: What’s the Difference?
      You had a sorta launch? And fumbled it, to boot? Hope you didn’t get burned. No, it’s never too late. And, as it turns out, I saw the fizzle/fuzzle anyway and your book is high up on my TBR list.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am now befuddled, thinking perhaps I don’t know what I’m talking about, launch vs promo. I’ve mentioned the thing (book) and shown its image here and there, in a fumbling bumbling manner, but no major fumbling that I can tell. Just a little book in a little circle of friends. No harm no foul. So far tax returns unaffected.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m clearly befuddled, as well. Perhaps we should leave this stuff to the experts. I was thinking of the launch of a brand new book long before it comes out (people spend months in the blogosphere doing virtual tours and interviews, setting up pre-order status, posting regularly about the upcoming release) vs promoting a book that’s already out (whether a new release or one that’s been around a few years…ahem). No glory or upset in taxes here, either. I’m fumbling about with my introverted self holding a glass of wine in one hand and my books in the other.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Eh. I like both. But, you’re right not to mix them in one night. It IS a long weekend though. I could possibly start the morning with a nice chilled wine and switch to beer much later in the evening. Or, you know, not. I’m not as young and bounce-backable as I once was. 🍷 🍺 Cheers!


  2. I’m afraid I’ve been a lot like you, Lemon. (May I call you by your first name?) Book launches mystify me, possibly because of the amount of work involved, but also because of all the different approaches one might take. Given too many choices, I’m apt to find a dark corner, curl up in a fetal position, and ignore it all.

    Having said that, YOU have inspired me to go buy a stick of incense or two and at least get the “faint aroma of new book wafting in the air.” (Brilliant line, btw.) I think that might even be a step forward for me. 😯

    LOVE this post, and your way with words. I already used the adjective “brilliant” but it bears repeating. And I sincerely hope you get some responses that are helpful. I’ll be watching. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • You may call me Lemon. I’m sure I’ve been called worse. 😉 Hey, lovely lady, is this true? I pegged you for a fireworks kind of gal. Although, thinking back, I guess I saw your books on your blog (with those gorgeous ads you’ve created).

      Yeah, I just don’t know about the rocket launcher. Though, it must be said, it kinda makes a spectacular show. There are some people whose new book is EVERYWHERE and you really can’t miss it. Which is a good thing. But I guess I don’t know how to go about it (and I like my sparklers–they’re pretty).

      So happy you’ve gone ahead and bought a stick or two of Marcia’s New Book incense. Send up some scented smoke signals. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • My marketing forte is in building a local readership by doing various programs to introduce myself to readers: book signings, local book clubs, and the like. I do a couple every month, on average. They can be book-related (Meet the Author eco tours, or club meetings) or something of wider interest (my Central Florida’s Fabulous Wildlife series). As long as I’m talking to friendly folks about things I love, be it writing or nature, I’m very much at home. And I always include a signing at the end of the event.

        When it comes to social media marketing, however, I have only dabbled in the usual suspects: Twitter, FB, blogging, and the like. I’ve built enough friendships online that I often get help from other writers and bloggers, via interviews, etc. But I haven’t done any serious marketing to the masses.

        I’m planning to do better with my next book. I don’t know if I’m going to do the book-launch-blog-circuit thingie or not, but I will likely do some ads for various “circulars” for want of a better term. Fussy Librarian, Book Goodies, Book Perks, and others. I want to work my way up to a promo ad for BookBub. That kind of thing. And I’ll be posting about what worked for me and what didn’t, as I try some of them out. (I’ve been keeping a list of posts about experiences others have had, hoping to avoid any major problems.)

        But honestly, I think the best strategies change from day to day, and you have to make a serious effort to keep up if you really want to find something that makes a major difference. And the more time I spend doing that, the less time I have for writing. At my age, the time factor is critical. 😯

        I DID do a very small (4 or 5 blogs) book launch on my last novella, and it was all I could do to put it together. However, even that much helped with sales, and I was very grateful to the friends who helped me do it. I’d also say book launches are still working for some folks. But I really don’t think I’ll be doing a huge one in the near future. Just thinking about it hurts my tiny little brain. Eeep.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, right. You have the local wildlife who love local wildlife. 😀 That’s fantastic.

        I’ve never even heard of Fussy Librarian, Book Goodies, Book Perks… Hmm. BookBub, I have (obviously, my review of The Emissary is on there–getting to the next one asap). I look forward to those posts of what worked and what didn’t. Much anticipation, my friend. Though I do hear you on the changing ways to impact readers. *sigh* More work just to find out what work we should be doing. And, yes, not writing.

        I remember that book launch. You and your novella were everywhere. I was in awe. Sorry it took so much out of you but, just being selfish, I’m *almost* glad to hear what was going on in the background as it’s easy to assume everything is simple and effortless when we see it done “right”. You know? Thanks, lovely. ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  3. On (I’m assuming, of course) behalf of any and all authors who tire of being told how they simply must do X, Y, and Z in order to “succeed” as published authors, thank you for this post.

    We all have limited energy. And there’s only so much one can do. The most important part is to decide where to focus your energy and effort for the benefit of your career and life over the long haul. And a great big launch with fireworks may not be either your speed or your style.

    Anyway, you’re not alone! That was a long-winded way of getting to the point, huh? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I must say, I was not expecting a response like this so thank you, Debbi. This is so true. (And I won’t, yet again, go into how successful you are as an author…oops.)

      We really do have limited time/energy whether we talk about it or not. I always talk about that crap on here. A lot of my posts include I’m-a-real-person-with-limitations-and-challenges-just-like-you stuff.

      I appreciate the idea of deciding. Yes, we do decide, in one way or another (time, life circumstances, energy, personality, introversion…) what to focus on in our lives, both personal and professional.

      I intend to publish more books so I suppose I’ll have to see if a big launch is my style or if I’ll stay on the porch with my sparkler drinking a beer.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. *sighs… I’m not even sure my sparkler will light in damp old England… my book launches are a bit like my attempts at making paper boats as a kid. Lots of enthusiasm, tonnes of hope and eventually a soggy old mess that was ore pollution that promotion. Your books are lovely, enjoyable and deserve the widest audience. Mine are all fine and dandy and I’m pleased with them and like my children I would like it if they made it on their own without further input from me. Do books tours and street thingies sell more? I’d do them if I knew how to do them ‘properly’ but I’m a bit suspicious that I’d cock them up.
    In the end I’ll write, publish because it stops me tinkering and allows me to out something on my book case, and join you in a little backyard partying. Shall I bring wine? A cheeky little Malbec with perky footprints? And crackers? There must be crackers

    Liked by 1 person

    • I never did understand paper boats. They get soggy, even if you make them right. Then they sink. You know?

      So, really? Because I feel like, when you release a new book, you’re all over the blogosphere. Interviews and guest posts and whatnot. Perhaps it’s just that you’re so lovable and people reblog your posts and shout out your new releases because they love you. Geoffle!

      I hope you keep writing and publishing. You really are a talented author. As for the backyard party, wine is always good but, agreed, cheese and crackers are a must.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I was thinking of you when I wrote this. Lucy tweeted that question and I got to thinking about how I do next to nothing. Then thought about the online stars of The Book Launch Done Right and Proper. I thought, ‘Huh. That would be Craig.’ I’d imagine it would fizzle eventually but a fizzle from HUGE to Medium-Sized is still good. Do your launches get the books out there enough to keep a slow burn?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sometimes. I think a lot depends on when you release, and whether it’s a story people might actually want to read. I knew my baseball science fiction wouldn’t garner a ton of attention, for example.

        Liked by 1 person

      • True. Times of year, what else is out there at the time, etc. I hear you on the story/genre, too. I have a couple of books here I’m hesitant to release because they’re not likely to be anyone’s cup of tea. Except mine. So I probably will. I’m actually looking forward to your baseball sci-fi but I know what you mean. (Sorry for the delayed response.)

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m feeling that sparkler fizzle for quite some time now with no real promoting. It’s called burn out, when all we really want to do is write, lol. But don’t forget to celebrate your accomplishments. ❤ xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re another one I thought of when writing this. You are all about town, my friend. SO excited for you! I’ll see about an upgrade. Not sure I know where to get a rocket launcher. Anyway, they may be illegal to purchase where I live. 😝 (I’ll be sharing your new book news so I might take some notes, if you don’t mind.)

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve never toured or had a street team, but I do a blog announcement! It’s an extreme introvert thing. Fortunately, bloggers are generous and kind and help me out without me needing to ask. And we all fizzle at the end. Lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You know I hear you on the extreme introvert thing. It really does carry over to online stuff. I know people think it doesn’t but…eh, it does. Indeed you do have a lot of bloggers/supporters/fans who spread the news. They get that rocket launcher out for you so…fireworks all the way! And I’m glad of that, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Interesting, Sarah. I am in the middle. I try to make a song and dance about book releases but I don’t go mad and push out loads of posts for cover reveals and things like that. Probably because I am a bit shy. I do write lots of articles on a related topic with a bit of a punt at the end.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great analogy. 🙂 Interesting that you are yet another author I feel does the book launch thing well. You seem to be everywhere in the blogosphere. I get the shy thing. I’m extremely introverted and, even online, it’s a bit painful to put myself out there. Funnily enough, one of the things I actually do is the cover reveal (so I can get feedback as to what works and what doesn’t). Well, whatever you’re doing, it’s working. So good on you. 🎆 (Sorry for the delay in replying.)

      Liked by 1 person

  8. (Obviously I’m binge-reading you today…) If I were launching a book, I know I’d try the fireworks route, but then I’d get tired or distracted and I wouldn’t be able to keep it up. I like your idea of a sparkler better. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.