Below is an email exchange between a book publicist (BP) and a publisher (PUB), who advertised for publicity help on Craigslist.
BP: I do book publicity - but one would have to know what exactly these books are before knowing if one could help. Can you send more information?
PUB: Hi BP and thanks for the email. I checked your site out. Anyways, if you are able to do some book publicity, I do have a few authors who need the help, but right now, I was hoping you could focus on just one for now. My author is also a [local] author and her debut novel is a fiction based narrative called, [TITLE]. It's about a woman who [is remarkably similar to a character in "Heroes"]. The book also is about a guy who [is remarkably similar to another character in "Heroes"], but that's all I will say for now! Their lives intersect and well....it becomes a sad surrealistic tale of craziness and love. I love it.
Anyways, I would love to hear your thoughts on what to do with [Author]. My idea would be to get her ten bookstore interviews/book signings in the [local] area, and/or 5 book club meet and greets where she has a chance to direct sale her book.
After this, I was thinking to get her twenty interviews on talk radio/online radio/ and reviews on websites across the net.
So this is all I would need for now. I would like her to maybe hit up some comic shops too....her book kinda falls into the super hero power category.
What do you think? If you are interested, please let me know most of all what you CAN ACTUALLY do and by what time frame and finally what that would cost. Do you accept payments/commission, or a combination of these and a flat fee maybe? If you work with me, I got four other authors who will need your services.
Let me know and thank you so much for responding to my ad either way. Take care. I hope to hear from you very soon!!
BP: So, all very interesting. Perhaps I can help - but I must see the book first - can you send me a copy? I will return it to you if you like. I just can't start jobs without knowing more about what I am getting into. Let me know what you think.
PUB: I would love to send you a copy of the book. I am attaching it as a .pdf format. Please do me a favor and even if you can't do anything for her on a marketing basis, would you provide a small review or opinion so that I can use it on her amazon book listing and my website? Let me know. Thank you>
BP: Hi, started reading it - it did keep me going. But I need the actual book - are you sending that?
PUB: I can send the actual book once we are in some kind of agreement. I hope you understand I just gave you a free copy and once we are in agreement with a pay, I'll send you a copy of the book and subtract it's cost out of your price for work. If you need a book cover, I can send you that as well, unless you have some other reason for wanting the book? Let me know. I am glad to answer any questions you might have and thanks so much for reading it!!! :). I appreciate that and I know [Author] will too. Be kind and give her a review if you get through it and that would be awesome. Take care.
BP: PUB, it is traditional in doing publicity to see and have a copy of that which you are publicizing - content is of course king, but how the book itself looks and is designed are important as well. If I were to help you, I would need several copies to use - we can't expect people to read a pdf all the way through.
PUB: Ok, fair enough. I understand. I will send you what you need once we are in contractual agreement and also you can let me know exactly what the books are going to be used for. I hope that makes sense. Just submit your plan and idea and exactly how you will do what I need and we'll go from there. Take care.
BP: PUB, we seem to have a failure to communicate. Before I give you a plan etc, I need to have a copy of the book itself in my hands. I will return it if need be, but I do not take a job promoting something I have not actually seen. And any book publicist who does isn't thinking clearly. No book in advance, no contract.
PUB: what's wrong with the pdf? It's the same thing as the book minus the front and back cover.....I am not really understanding the problem. I am not going to send you out a free copy of the book because it cost me money and I don't even know if I can afford or use you at this point..you might have the worst ideas in the world or the best, but by sending you a free pdf copy, it's free for me and I save on expenses. I am a small indy publisher keep that in mind please. Every dollar for me counts and I only give away promo books to people that are doing reviews or interviews/book clubs, that sort of thing. You are interested in working for ME, and if you want the job, I would think it wouldn't be too much to ask to have you simply read the pdf and send me a plan of action back. I have had MANY MANY people respond to my ad and ALL of them have done it this way. You HAVE seen the book because it's what I sent you. If you need to have me send you the covers, I can do that as well.
Would it be possible for you even give me an example of some other marketing campaign you have done for another book author, starting from scratch...show me how and what you did? this way I have an idea of what you have done and you don't even need my book because it's what you've done for something else? Let me know. I'm trying real hard to work with ya here lol
BP: I wish you the best of luck. With MANY MANY people, you'll surely have no problems finding the right person.
PUB: No need to be a smart ass. I realize you probably think it's ok to do that because you are hiding behind a computer, but seriously, I don't appreciate the bold MANY MANY. I wasn't trying to be mean to you at all...I just simply wanted to know EXACTLY what you would do and I didn't understand or see how you having a physical copy of my book is necessary for you to tell me how you would go about going to get reviews and such and do publicity. Plus I already sent you a pdf....I mean...seriously bro, do you just respond to ads and try to get free books or do you actually do marketing? I guess it don't matter...people who act the way you act probably are all talk and no show anyways. Peace.