Talk About It Thursday

Talk About It Thursday with Pema Donyo

Book Launch Lessons: Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

by Pema Donyo

 one last letter

Stress, mistakes, surprise, and gratitude? Sounds like the release day for my first novel, The Innocent Assassins.

Unlike other digital-first publishers, Astraea Press doesn’t upload pre-orders for e-books on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. I didn’t see any of my book’s purchase pages until the day of release. Imagine my surprise (and horror) to discover the summaries on each e-book outlet included the wrong name for the hero!

It wasn’t a complete shock. I changed the hero’s name halfway through the editing process, so the summary I first submitted to Astraea Press used the original name for the hero. It was completely my fault. I was the one who forgot to submit an updated summary for the buyer pages.

I e-mailed the owner of Astraea Press about the summary change. She was quick to reply and said an edited version would be uploaded by the next day; all I had to do was send her the new summary with the name change. I rushed to send her the updated summary. True to her word, the summary with theright name for the hero was added to all major e-book outlets. Crisis averted!

Additionally, I hadn’t told anyone my book was being published. Since pre-orders weren’t available for my book anyway, I used the element of surprise as a marketing tactic. I posted news of my release (for the first time) to all my social media profiles on book launch day. Within minutes, I received texts and messages from my friends and family with both words of congratulations and disbelief that I’d kept it a secret for so long!

News of my novel spread through word of mouth and resulted in a healthy spike of sales over the next few days. Pre-orders are a commonly discussed method for book marketing, but surprise can work in your favor as well. Advance orders can work great, but authors shouldn’t worry about losing a pre-order audience either.

The biggest takeaway? Everything will be fine. Put in the hard work and rewards will come your way!

I’m definitely keeping this in mind for my book launch day on August 18 for my second novel, a historical Western romance titled One Last LetterPre-orders are now available on Amazon USUK, and Canada! To learn more about my books, visit my website below.


Pema Donyo is the author of The Innocent Assassins and One Last Letter. She is also a coffee-fueled college student by day and a creative writer by night. She currently lives in sunny Southern California, where any temperature less than 70 degrees is freezing and flip-flops never go out of season. As a rising sophomore at Claremont McKenna, she’s still working on mastering that delicate balance between finishing homework, meeting publisher deadlines, and… college.

She’s a firm believer in the healing power of endless cups of coffee and espresso shots, staying up until3AM, cheesy British period dramas, and the Beyonce Voters Tumblr page. Find her rambles/rants about writing, reading, and life in general on her website’s blog.



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