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popmuze
01-01-2017, 09:21 PM
Through a quirk of the editing process, I am now in the position of having two books coming out this spring from two different (traditional) publishers, both of them on music. With one coming out in March and the other in May, is it too soon to start spreading the word (even though I have yet to see final proofs on either of them)? Do I mention them both at once? What about when I'm pitching to music magazines and websites? If I'm doing a radio interview for one, can I mention the other? Is it possible that one book will cannibalize the sales of the other? Will my publishers be mad when they find out? How can I make the most of this truly once in a lifetime situation?

Toothpaste
01-02-2017, 09:11 AM
Wow. This is a really tough question. What do your contracts say? Usually there are non-compete clauses somewhere in there. So yeah your publishers could very well be mad if they find out. If not, then I don't think you should worry about your publishers and can probably use them to help promote the other.

I guess the key thing, if you are allowed to advertise them both at the same time, is to find what makes each unique so that hopefully people will be interested in wanting one of each. The tricky thing really will be not overloading people with too much info. Double titles, double publishing dates etc is more info for people to keep in mind.

I definitely think right now you should solely focus on your March release (which you really should be promoting now, I mean your publisher has to send out ARCs for review in Jan to the major reviewing outlets because they tend to need them around 3-4 months pre-publication) and then shift the focus to the May one once the first is out.

Things then get seriously complicated because you'll still want to promote the March one and that will take you into the May pre-publication promotion. But if you work hard at making each work distinct that will definitely be helpful with that.

So . . . yeah. Hopefully this is helpful :) .

Old Hack
01-02-2017, 01:40 PM
Through a quirk of the editing process, I am now in the position of having two books coming out this spring from two different (traditional) publishers, both of them on music. With one coming out in March and the other in May, is it too soon to start spreading the word (even though I have yet to see final proofs on either of them)?

*Trade* publishing.

I don't think it's too soon to start talking about them, no. I'm amazed, though, that the two publishers were both ok with these two books coming out so close to one another.


Do I mention them both at once? What about when I'm pitching to music magazines and websites?

You're actually a bit late to start working on the March release if you want it covered by magazines, which often have a three-month lead time. But this is something your publisher should do.


If I'm doing a radio interview for one, can I mention the other?

Of course you can. But your publishers and publicists might not like you doing that bearing in mind they're both coming out in a very short period of time.


Is it possible that one book will cannibalize the sales of the other?

Highly likely, I'd say. I'm surprised they're being published so close together.


Will my publishers be mad when they find out?

I cannot believe you've not told them. I think they're going to be steaming mad. I know I would be.

You should have told them before you signed your contracts. The fact that you've left it so late and you've still not told them? Awful. If they put any effort into marketing and promoting these books their efforts are going to be diluted by the presence of the second book; as will the sales be.

In your place I would now tell them both as a matter of urgency. It's not too late for the publisher of the May release to delay publication, which will give both books a better chance of sales, but it's not going to be easy for them to do this.


How can I make the most of this truly once in a lifetime situation?

You can tell your publishers, apologise profusely for not telling them sooner, and hope that everything works out.

Undercover
01-02-2017, 05:16 PM
Are both books similar and with the music theme? I agree that the March release would be something to focus on first.

Alcasgra
01-02-2017, 05:51 PM
That's a wonderful dilemma to have. :)

I agree with a previous post. If there was a non-competition clause, that might pose to be a problem and the publishers might not like the situation. I think it might be best to let your publishers know if that was indeed the case. Otherwise, just promote the March-book before the May-book.

Congrats! :)

popmuze
01-02-2017, 06:48 PM
To answer some of the issues brought up by Old Hack: I'm sure I mentioned this at the time to both (small but still traditional) publishers. One book is about an artist, the other is a book of stories behind the songs. So I think they complement each other. The only reason they're coming out so close together is because the one on the artist went a year beyond the deadline, due to a number of unforeseen circumstances, many on the publisher's side. Having had books published by both companies before, I don't expect much from either in the way of publicity or promotion. Luckily, here in the age of the Internet, many of the websites that cover music have much shorter deadlines than the Vanity Fairs, Playboys, and Esquires of the world.

Toothpaste
01-03-2017, 06:20 PM
It's not so much about big magazines like Vanity Fair nor is it about music coverage. It's about the review trades: Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Booklist etc. These are the reviews that librarians, bookstores etc look at and can absolutely help with sales etc. You need lead time for that. If your publisher hasn't already, I would advise you to push them very hard to send out some kind of ARCs at the very least to those reviewers. The March one may be too late, but the May one still has a bit of time. Also sending material to these trades is kind of a baseline for a publisher and it seriously concerns me that they don't seem to have plans for it.

popmuze
01-03-2017, 06:57 PM
I'll have to check in with them today to find out their plans. They're more of an academic and reference publisher (the hardcover of my book is listed at $135) so I would think the library and college markets are their main targets. But there's a softcover edition that could cross over, since it's about rock and roll.

Old Hack
01-03-2017, 08:14 PM
If they're at all academic, and if libraries and universities are their potential markets, then it's extremely worrying if they haven't sent out any ARCs at this stage. You really should press them to do this.

Many libraries will only acquire books which are reviewed by their specialist presses. So a failure to send out any ARCs could well mean a failure to make any sales at all.

Note that once the first edition is published those publications will not consider the book for review, so you really do need them to get a move on with this.

popmuze
01-04-2017, 07:14 PM
Apparently this place sends out a press release about the book and then review copies on request. Don't know if anyone has requested it.