Thanks for joining me on the 2012 MARA-thon! This includes a physical book tour through Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and California, and it includes a national blog tour. During the entire MARA-thon, please be sure to download your FREE prequel short story, When Whales Watch at www.MaraPurl.com/downloads. As of January 1, you’ll be able to find purchase links for all e-readers at http://marapurl.com/books/when-whales-watch.
This is posted from the road during my All-Indie-Bookstore book tour titled MAPPING THE JOURNEY OF YOUR HEART. Revisit the entire tour at any time by visiting www.MaraPurl.com/calendar where you’ll see event details, links to the bookstores, and soon, photo archives. Also join me on the ongoing Double Blog Tour, which will be archived at http://marapurl.com/fall-blog-tour-schedule.
It’s always an exciting time for me when the newest novel in the Milford-Haven series appears. Behind the scenes, we’ve been working toward this moment for a whole year. True, I’m the sole author of these novels, but by “we” I don’t just mean the royal we. You might say it takes a village to create a book. My editor, the brilliant Vicki Werkley, works with me at several points through the writing process. Then my accomplished proofreader Jean Laidig works through the text with a fine-toothed comb. Meanwhile, artist Mary Helsaple and I work together conceptualizing the cover art early-on in the writing process, and when she’s completed her gorgeous watercolor, it goes to marvelous graphic artist and cover designer Kevin Meyer. Meanwhile the entire team at Bellekeep is overseeing and managing all this, from publisher Margot Atwell to publishing manager Tara Goff and publishing assistant Kara Johnson.
When does the marketing begin? Almost as soon as the book gets started. First, the Bellekeep marketing team brainstorms the core themes of my new book. Second, publishing partner/distributor Midpoint Trade has an expert team who begin grappling with the book’s theme and branding, matching it behind the scenes with the many organizations who present and purchase books, be it libraries, chain stores, web-sellers, or independent bookstores. And third, DM Productions joins the team to forge the all-important connections to the actual bookstores, blog hosts and media hosts who’ll partner with us for the actual book launch.
It was during the process that the team made the choice to focus this year on Indiebound and the large network of independent bookstores that enjoy membership in this national organization. The concept was such a terrific one: match the internal and external worlds. That is, take the core story of Where the Heart Lives, which involves my protagonist Miranda Jones going on a physical journey in California, and match it with me as I journey on my book tour. The first part of the tour will take me farther afield than Miranda travels — to New Mexico and Arizona, where I have a large group of readers. Then it’ll take me on the California part of the tour, during which I actually will be making stops exactly where Miranda does. So the map of this part of my tour bears a striking resemblance to the actual book cover.
The physical tour’s schedule that stretches out ahead of me is so exciting! My husband will join me for the first long leg, and we love our road trips. During both segments I’ll be connecting with good friends and with readers in person. However, a physical book tour on its own now leaves out far too many readers, so the team has also arranged a concurrent blog tour. I’m still not quite sure how I’ll manage it all — drive with left hand and blog with the right? Not! Instead, the team has arranged enough time between physical stops for me to connect with the spectacular blog hosts who are part of this year’s fantastic blog tour! These include, for example, Entertainment Examiner, Romance Junkies, and the National Association of Baby Boomer Women, to name just a few.
So, as you can see, this really is a “MARA-thon” . . . from the new novel’s first outline, through the many blog posts, all the way to the last day of the tour, which won’t happen until December. Whew! Every “mile” so far has been a challenge and a joy. And I hope you’ll ride along with me on the interesting journey ahead. Remember, the entire schedule will be posted on my website. And afterwards, the entire blog tour will be archived on my website to be enjoyed any time.
For more information on the evolving world of The Milford Haven Novels, visit my new website www.MaraPurl.com where you can subscribe to my newsletter, follow me on social media, enjoy photos and videos, discover more special offers and more.