A rising demand for help in getting independently-authored books and ebooks to market led Kansas City PR firm AlexanderG Public Relations to offer independent book publishing consultation.
“Since word has spread about my own books, I’ve have had many inquiries from independent writers asking for advice on ebooks, print-on-demand (POD) and independent publishing in general,” said AlexanderG Public Relations owner Alex Greenwood.
Writing as J. Alexander Greenwood, he is an independent novelist with several ebook and print-on-demand titles. An early adopter and advocate of ebooks, he was recently keynote presenter at a Kansas City Public Library event about his writing and indie publishing.
“In response to the interest from writers, we created Caroline Street Press, LLC. Caroline Street is a publisher of independent fiction, nonfiction and multimedia works,” he said. “Caroline Street works with AlexanderG PR as consultants helping independent writers get their books to market.”
“Our primary focus is consulting on the editing, production and packaging of ebooks and print-on-demand paperbacks,” he added. “Though Caroline Street is a publishing imprint, we do not pay advances or provide printing services. Instead, we guide writers through the independent book publishing process and help them market their work. Whatever they need–editing to cover art, formatting to distribution, marketing to public relations–we can help.”
“At Caroline Street, our aim is to use my experience and network of artists, editors, book formatters and distributors to help independent authors publish the best possible work,” Greenwood said.
The demand is palpable.
“According to the Association of American Publishers, E-books grew a dramatic +164.8 percent in December 2010 vs the previous year ($49.5 Million vs $18.7M),” he said. “E-book sales represented 8.32 percent of the trade book market in 2010 vs 3.20 percent the previous year. A huge chunk of those are independent, non-traditionally published titles–called ‘indies’ by many. There are a sizable number of new and even established writers who need help navigating the steps to get their books out there.
Consulting services are project fee-based.
“We don’t take a percentage of sales like a traditional publisher,” Greenwood said. “We help authors prepare their books ready for publication, get them launched and if the authors wish, create and enact a marketing and promotion campaign. We offer three pricing plans.”
Greenwood added that in his 20-year career in public relations, he has a proven track record of successful promotion and marketing of books, music and entertainers. He also has experience as a reporter, newspaper editor, columnist, blogger and magazine editor.
Caroline Street Press is publisher of two indie novels, Pilate’s Cross and Pilate’s Key (and the forthcoming Pilate’s Ghost) by Greenwood. Caroline Street also publishes short stories, including the award-winning short-story Obsidian. The company is currently working on two business books and is consulting with several aspiring authors.
For more information, email Caroline Street Press here.
Founded in 2010. AlexanderG Public Relations has one of the most diverse portfolios of experience and success in the Kansas City area. We’ve spent our careers building a knowledge base that spans several industries and disciplines including healthcare marketing and management, higher education marketing and public relations, broadcasting, publishing, non-profit communications, news media and more.
As a member of PRConsultants Group, we also have associates in every major media market in the United States. Work with us and you get “big agency” service with the affordability of a boutique firm.
Our past and present clients include local, regional and national retailers, organizations, associations, universities and individuals including Tide, Duracell, The Limited, Blockbuster Video, the University of Kansas School of Business, Front Porch Alliance of Kansas City, Community Christian Church of Kansas City, I.O. Metro Furniture Stores, EcoHab and many more.
Getting (or giving) a Kindle, Nook or iPad this holiday season? Then how about a fun book to go with your new ereader? As featured on KCUR Radio, Pilate’s Cross is garnering some great reviews and enthusiastic fans. Based on a true story, this quirky mystery has been called “a total winner, ” “a page turner” and “intriguing” by readers.
Featuring a cool cover by the talented Mr. Terrill, this ebook will soon be available as a paperback, too. But with ereaders being all the rage, we hope you’ll save a tree–and some cash–and take us up on this special Black Friday offer: order Pilate’s Cross from the publisher website today and get 75% off the cover price. That’s right–get a copy of this quirky thriller for only $1.00! Just click here and use discount code JJ48P at checkout.
Still not sold? Check out the book trailer!
Offer expires this weekend, so hurry!
Regular readers of this blog may recall that I published an ebook and recently premiered a book trailer. Pete Dulin of Present Magazine of Kansas City interviewed me about the book and the trailer. Here’s an excerpt:
PresentMagazine.com: How long did it take to write the book?
Greenwood: “I wrote the first draft in three months – six days a week, three to four hours a day. Yes, I will cop to the cliche’: I wrote that first draft on a laptop in the Starbucks at Country Club Plaza.
The finished book people are reading today on their iPads and Kindles took about eighteen months and six drafts. I did about four “polishes” on top of that.”
PresentMagazine.com: How did the idea for a book trailer come about?
“Readers have told me they thought they could easily see Pilate’s Cross as a movie. That’s why I’m so excited I got the chance to work with the talented crew at T2 + Back Alley Films of Kansas City.
This never would have happened without the vision of T2 + Back Alley Films CEO Teri Rogers. She’s a courageous innovator, always looking ahead to that next undiscovered country. When I told her about my book, she immediately suggested a trailer. Not many firms of T2’s stature are doing trailers. I had given a trailer some thought, but never dreamed a nationally recognized digital media agency like T2 would work with me.
The trailer really transports you right into the world of Cross Township – like a movie. I wrote a treatment and a script, and then T2’s team created a concept that I think just blows away most book trailers. Their concept and screen execution was teamed with Wheeler Audio of Kansas City to record actors and mix sound.
I will also join T2’s Paul Miles Schneider (besides being a gifted graphics producer at T2 he has written the acclaimed novel Silver Shoes) on KCUR Radio’s “Central Standard” show Monday, October 25 at 10 a.m. CST. (You can stream it on the internet if you’re not in the KC area.) We will be talking about book marketing, ebooks, trailers and of course, our books!
The latest marketing and promotional tool for authors and publishers is the book trailer–like a movie preview trailer, but for books:
In recent years, publishers, authors, teachers and students have been using the book trailer, a promotional video, to develop buzz and cultivate readers for a book. Some book trailers are similar to the familiar movie preview while others look like something you will see on MTV.
Some trailers focus on the story (many even tell you the whole story, like an overwrought PowerPoint book report!) some interview the author, and many more just confound me with their incomprehensibility. Of course, like anything, there’s a lot of DIY going on in book trailer production; with predictably dreary (dare I say crappy) results. For every compelling, well-produced trailer, you get about one hundred trailers slapped together with bad clip art, stock photos, bland music and cheesy graphics. Yeah, that makes me want to read the book. Not.
I don’t mean to be nasty, but if you’re going to represent your product–especially one I presume you spent years writing–do it right.
That said, I wrote a mystery thriller novel. Long story short, after a couple of near-misses with being signed by an agent over a two-year period I decided I could stick the book in a drawer forever or publish it as an independent ebook with Smashwords. I’m glad I did. Pilate’s Cross has sold more than a few copies (on iBooks, BarnesandNoble.com, Kobo and Smashwords), and hundreds more have sampled it. I still believe in the book and feel it could reach a broader audience if it could just rise above the crowd a bit.
Thinking along those lines, many of my readers told me they thought it was a book they could easily see as a movie. Well, I certainly couldn’t make a movie out of an indie novel, but a book trailer was in the cards. That’s why I’m so excited I got the chance to work with the celebrated digital media design company T2 + Back Alley Films of Kansas City.
Lead by CEO Teri Rogers, T2 + Back Alley Films is a nationally recognized digital media agency that creates all forms of new media content. Their specialties include motion graphics design, experiential design, augmented reality and other forms of new media, as well as original films and documentaries, digital production and postproduction.
The book’s cinematic structure made it an ideal project for T2, and I’m over the moon at their interpretation of the book. We agreed that it should be a book trailer that could easily pass as a movie trailer.We had some fun with the voice-over, though we resisted the urge to say “In a world…”
Have a look:
The trailer really transports you right into the world of Cross Township–like a movie. I wrote a treatment and a script, then T2’s team created a concept that I think just blows away most trailers. Their concept and screen execution was teamed with Wheeler Audio of Kansas City to record actors and mix sound for the trailer. (I voiced two of the characters–guess which ones?)
The trailer was truly a collaborative effort between T2, Wheeler and me. I just hope that the book lives up to the high expectations set by the trailer.
So, since the premiere on October 13, 2010 at PilatesCross.com I’ve received many nice comments about the trailer and renewed interest in the book. The trailer is now out there on several trailer sites, YouTube and Smashwords. It’s my hope that the crossover will aid in raising the book’s profile.
Book trailers are here to stay, I’d say, especially in our multimedia world. What do you think–are they here to stay or just a flash in the pan?
Fantastic book trailer. Best ever. At least until mine is done. Until then, have some fun:
I have immense respect for people who can draw–and I don’t mean doodles. I mean people who can sit down to a pad with a few bits of charcoal and create something magnificent. The wonders that flow from the pen of a gifted artist never cease to amaze and grant me joy.
One of my favorite artists is also a friend, David Terrill. By day, David is an exceptional illustrator and brand designer for a nationally-recognized advertising agency. There he creates cool stuff for everything from beer packaging to colorful, suitable-for-framing event posters.
That said…I’d be completely disingenuous if I didn’t tell you that one of my favorite works by David is the cover he designed for my ebook, Pilate’s Cross. David seemed to effortlessly zero in on the themes of mystery, isolation and danger that I wanted to express in my book and create a cover reminiscent of a cool poster for an Alfred Hitchcock movie.
Here’s his take on his process:
I really enjoyed working on this project. I was able to explore my love of illustrating type and its relation to negative space. The title is knocked out of the silhouette of the man’s profile, forming a “maze”. This signifies the characters “internal search” along with the “external search” for answers in regard to the murder mystery. There is a small graphic figure of a man entering the maze. The black and white relates to the winter setting for the story.
I have to tell you, I get more compliments on the cover than I do the actual content of the book–and that’s alright by me. David’s cool cover helps the book leap off the virtual shelf in the iBooks store, Kobo, Barnes & Noble and the publisher’s site. It will likely be featured in an upcoming trailer for the book as well. (More about that soon.)
Besides that, collaborating with a pro like David really makes you step up your game–I recommend it if you ever get the chance. I’m very excited to be working with him on another project, which we will roll out when it’s ready. Until then, I invite you to take a look at his work on his website: I Draw All Day and on Facebook.
Trust me, it will draw you in.
Just had to share…
So last month we worked on our first audio book and then this month we started working on our first trailer for an eBook. Good thing we’re just as interested in books as we are in audio!