This post originally ran July 23, 2010
For the last three weeks, I’ve been plugging away at my author questionnaire. The packet I received started with a note from my editor which included this:
What you tell us here will serve as the foundation of our marketing, sales, subsidiary rights, and publicity efforts for your book, so your responses are very important.
I was grateful to have spent some time last winter thinking through things like my target audience, comp. titles, and institutions/organizations that might be interested in MAY B. (such as prairie museums).
For those of you who missed my series on Marketing Plans, click here to see the first post.
It’s surprising to find out how interesting this aspect of publishing is to me. I never expected to find promotion fun, but I’m telling you, there is something very satisfying about discovering a person or organization that might connect with your book. Think matchmaking and treasure hunting combined.
My questionnaire ends with something I especially fun:
As you may have gathered by now, we want readers to get to know you. This short list of questions-and-answers will be featured on our website. If you’d like to participate, please choose five questions from the list below and compose five brief (a few sentences are fine) answers. If you have something amusing to share that’s not covered below, feel free to invent your own question(s). If you submit more than five sets of questions/answers we will select five to appear on the site.
- Can you share any funny, strange, or wonderful stories about how your book came to be?
- What are you reading now?
- What are you working on now?
- Do you eat your vegetables?
- If you had a superpower, what would it be?
- How long did it take you to write this book?
- What was the hardest thing about writing a book?
- When did you know you were a writer?
- What was your inspiration for writing this book?
- Who is your favorite author?
- What’s the history of your first or last name?
- What was your favorite food when you were little?
- What is your favorite food now?
- Do you have any unusual or special family traditions?
- Do you have any hobbies?
- What was your favorite book when you were a child?
- How do you cheer yourself up when you’re feeling down?
- What is your favorite birthday memory?
- What is your favorite sandwich?
- If you owned a horse, what would you name it?
- How do you spend a rainy Saturday morning?
- What was the first book you can remember reading?
- What’s your favorite snack food?
- If you were an animal, what would you be and why?
- What is your favorite thing about being an author/illustrator?
- How long does it take you to write a book or create a piece of art?
- What book do you re-read every few years?
- What did you want to be when you grew up?
I ended up answering ten. We’ll see what’s selected for Random House’s site. What would you pick to answer about yourself? Share your answers in the comment section!