Publishing veteran Carl Lennertz discusses the difference between between book marketing and publicity and where self-published authors should spend their money.

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You’ve written an amazing book. You’ve gone through a thorough editing process. Your book cover has been designed and it looks amazing. You have spent months, even years to get to this point, and you are probably experiencing a combination of elation and exhaustion. Well, take a deep breath and get ready for round two, because now you are ready for the next steps: publishing and promoting your book.

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Think you're missing out on the Christmas rush? Maybe not. Self-published authors stand a better chance of sales in January and February. So get ready!

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Think of your book description as the most important sales pitch of your life. Every word must count, every idea must serve to rope readers in. Too often, indie authors fall short and lose readers to a book with better promo copy.

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Jacket copy is never going to be “perfect.” It’ll never capture everything you want readers to know about your book or your achievements as an author. So give up on trying to pack it all in and just accept the fact that this is supposed to be, much like the descriptions on a menu, a teaser. First throw your hands in the air, and then use them to karate chop all the extraneous elements into submission. What’s left over will be in fighting trim.

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Book Promotion Checklist for Indie AuthorsSo you finished your book. Congratulations! That's a major accomplishment. Now it's time to put together all the stuff you'll need to help you sell your book once it's published, including...

1. A short book description

There are a handful of reasons you'll need a short, compelling book description (one or two sentences at most): as a soundbite in interviews, as a teaser on your website, as the hook in your press materials and communications with folks in the publishing industry, and maybe even as the tagline in your email signature!

2. A longer book description

Once you've hooked 'em with the soundbite, they'll want to read more.

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