Write to Publish—the annual conference that Ooligan hosts to demystify the publishing world for writers—has come and gone. By all accounts, it went pretty well. For an event that housed two concurring panels and a room for publishing vendors, the rooms were filled and it was well attended. Of course, the logistics of hosting an event is one thing (securing food for the event, finding speakers who were willing to talk, etc.), but getting people to buy tickets and come to the event is another, which is where marketing comes in.
The one thing you can do is write a really good book—a book that’s good enough that somebody will read it, and at the end, turn to somebody else and say, “You have to read this one.” So I think it’s empowering; the best marketing you can do is write a good book.
Ooligan was approached by a fellow writer and editor who is involved in the Portland literary scene, which is often predominantly white. Where are the Asian, African American, Native American, and Latino writers he knows reside in this city?
So you’ve written a novel. You’ve done a couple of drafts, and you feel good enough about it to ask a few people to take a look. Choose carefully; you need constructive feedback, not unconditional love. You won’t get it from the person who’s kept all your precious papers since you were four, and you won’t get it from your soul mate. Your trusted readers are business casual: friendly, but there for a reason.
The first read is mostly for characters and story—the who, what, and why. Your trusted readers tell you what was great about the book and what wasn’t so great. They ask for clarification and comment on that thing that happens in chapter four that maybe could happen sooner, or not at all. You grit your teeth, smile, and revise.
It wasn’t just that I was older and participating as a team member rather than an attendee. The 2017 conference was a softer, more intimate affair.
Today we celebrate Valentine’s Day, Oregon’s statehood, and … the publication of Seven Stitches! Ooligan Press is thrilled to bring you the third companion book of the Blue Thread Saga. Read more about Seven Stitches, then join us on Thursday at Another Read Through for the official launch party.