Monday, August 13, 2012

The Beautiful American by Marilyn Holdsworth - Guest Post & Kindle Fire Giveaway

The Beautiful American
by Marilyn Holdsworth

Abby Long is thrilled when she offers the winning bid for an antique desk at an auction. With its intricately inlaid woods and elegant style, the desk is perfect for Abby; it is the gift she promised herself to finally celebrate her thriving antique business. She has no idea that the antique desk holds a secret that will lead her on a fascinating, life-changing journey back in time.

When Abby discovers a hidden diary stuffed inside a secret compartment in the desk, she can hardly wait to read the spidery, faded script. As she carefully turns the tattered pages, she reads the captivating story of two remarkable women from opposite backgrounds who somehow manage to form an unforgettable bond against the backdrop of a fledgling America struggling to find its place in the world. Elizabeth Kortright Monroe, the wife of James Monroe, and Jasmine, a young slave girl, develop an extraordinary relationship as they are united by pivotal historic events, political intrigues, and personal tragedies.

From a bucolic Virginia plantation to the bloodied, starving streets of post-revolutionary Paris, this powerful tale follows the lives of two courageous women from the past as they quietly influence—and inspire—a woman of today’s world.

Add on Goodreads, and buy on Amazon.

Many Authors See Marketing as a Bind
Guest Post by Marilyn Holdsworth

Many authors see marketing as a bind. I believe that for a true artist, anything that takes time away from her art, in this case, creative writing, is lost time. That said, if she wants to become known as an author, she must take some time to promote her books. There is nothing that can substitute for personal involvement in the marketing. No one else has the intimate knowledge of her work needed to make a promotion successful. This is not to say she should not hire professional publicists, web designers and others to help. Indeed this is to be encouraged to the extent the budget permits. However, the author must maintain final say before any program is launched. It is important for authors to use all the media at their disposal. That includes email campaigns to properly targeted readers, radio interviews, book fairs, book signings, giveaways, direct advertising in newspapers and appropriate magazines.

In today's world, coverage in the social network is essential. Authors must use the social network judiciously, not merely as a forum to promote their books. They need to join groups, contribute to conversations and offer help and advice to others. It is important to select groups that will relate well to the author's topic. For instance, if she has written a horse story, she joins groups that favor horses. Find authors whose work you like and offer to review their books. Many times they will reciprocate. It is important to obtain as many review as possible.

While marketing is not what I love to do, I have learned that it is vital to a book's success, and for us indie authors, that means a lot of hard work. 

About the author:
Marilyn Holdsworth graduated from Occidental College, where she majored in literature and history. She has traveled extensively in France and currently is a Huntington Library Fellow. Marilyn is a descendant of James Monroe, has visited Monroe's Virginia residence, and conducted research at the James Monroe Museum. She currently lives in Southern California.

Connect with Marilyn on Facebook. 
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