Indie Gypsy Press (indiegypsy.com) is pushing Black & Single Blues like a bulldozer. I’m the new kid on the block and already included in the promo material. As in t-shirts brandishing the book’s cover, designed by head honcho Shelley Halima, are available for purchase. Works for me.
Let me explain the obvious: a publisher getting behind a writer, instead of the writer having to drag the publisher along behind makes all the difference in the world. Halima understands that, since she’s a novelist, successful at that, with Azucar Moreno, Los Morenos and Blinding Mirror under her belt and Crimson Mirror set for release this winter. Hence, when you go the website, there is smart-marketing. Not just bells and whistles for the sake of trying to look good but, truly, some savvy salesmanship going on (Saleswomanship? After all, she’s got a whole gang of talented gals putting their shoulders to the wheel with her.) It doesn’t stop with highlighting books (FYI, Liz DeJesus’ Morgan is a Kindle/Amazon.com best-seller!). Ever hear the saying a woman has to be twice as smart at her job as a man but fortunately it takes half the effort? What can I say: some stereotypes happen to be true. Women just naturally know how to sell – ever try to turn one down when she really wants something from you? Good luck. There is at the site an attractive array of incidental offerings. Nearly 20 categories. From more stuff you can buy (jewelry, t-shirts, coffee mugs and more) to getting an in-depth take on the company (author page, book signings/appearances, handsome 17-page press kit and more) to sharing recipes in the Gypsy Kitchen to keeping track of what’s going on with Azucar Moreno‘s adaptation to cinema (some damned good actors are on board – Ciera Payton, Christopher Williams, Roberto Sanchez – not household names but, trust me, you’ll recognize the faces from their impressive work on film, television and stage) to the IG Blog and, well, yeah, more. This is the quality of mastermind machinery that has my back for Black & Single Blues. Any wonder I don’t feel nearly as nervous about my career as I used to was, before Halima and Indie Gypsy Press gave the book a home?
It was dumb luck. Hadn’t been in contact with Shelley since reviewing Azucar Moreno, Los Morenos and Blinding Mirror for Insight News and interviewing her for Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder. Like all the rest of her avid audience (Halima, take it to the bank, has chops for days!), was waiting on Crimson Mirror to hit. The split second I learned it was available placed an order at Amazon.com. So doing, followed-up, communicating with Indie Gypsy on Facebook. Purely by chance, let it drop that Black & Single Blues was about to be a Kindle book. Not so fast, she figured. And asked to first peek at it. Read it and welcomed me to her fold with open arms. Good thing. Otherwise, I’d be fiddle-farting around, trying to drum up business by hook or crook, hustling my ass off, spending more time and energy chasing my tail than actually getting anywhere. Sure glad I happened to say something.
That’s the name of that tune. In keeping with, idly asked the lady how much it’d cost to get an Indie Gypsy tote bag (my Target one was shot to shit, anyway, but you should see the IG logo – it’s swinging). Well, they didn’t have one. A light bulb lit over Shelley’s head and she promptly made noises about adding that item to the company’s merchandising repertoire. I’ve seen what she’s done to promote her authors with apparel and accessories: T-shirts (my favorite of all time has to be the one with a hot fox saying, “Sexy Nerds are cerebral. Not only can we stimulate your mind, we can f*ck your brains out.”), caps, playing cards, notebooks, you name it. Simply ingenious, subtle ways to make her company a part of reader’s lives – like I said, women know how to work it. There are times when it pays to be a man whose sensible enough to go with that. For his own good.
P.S. Just got late-breaking news that something really hot is going to happen at Indie Gypsy for Black & Single Blues in September!