Friday, December 15, 2017

On the Telly

A few months ago, I was invited to be part of a program on local television. WTVQ in Lexington, Kentucky hosts a morning show called Good Day Kentucky.  Since I was going to partner with the Woodford Humane Society at the book signing of Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell, the marketing director of the animal shelter asked me to join her during her taping. 

Naturally, I was flattered.  Who could pass up this amazing advertising moment?  But deep inside, I was wondering what on earth have I done? I'm terribly shy.

Way back in high school, I actually enjoyed performing in plays and loved being in front of an audience.  But fast forward about forty years. Like the other dance classes at Dancers' Studio in Lexington, Kentucky, my ballet class would perform at the annual recital. I knew the routine perfectly. On the day of the performance however, I got stage fright. My feet literally stuck to the floor.  We're talking deer-in-the-headlights frozen. Luckily, in what seemed an eternity, I snapped out of it and fell back in line to finish the dance.

Since then, being in front of an audience makes me nervous. But people tell me to relax. They say being on television is no different than having a conversation with a friend. They say it's easy when you talk about what you love.  

I love Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell. It's a special book because it shows the value of  pet rescue and encourages young kids to solve problems and recognize peer pressure.  And that's what I tried to remember when I sat upon the yellow sofa greeted by Troy and  Katie.  Granted, I was terrified being on live TV, but the experience was worth it because I was able to show people how excited I was about my book.    

If you have the chance to be on television to promote your book, go for it.  Don't let shyness stand in your way.  It's difficult trying to find ways to market your work.  Embrace this amazing opportunity.   

Tips for preparing for a television spot:
  1.  Prepare questions for the host ahead of time
  2.  Practice your responses
  3.  Stand (or sit ) before a mirror as you practice your responses
  4.  Arrive early and check in with the the receptionist.
  5.  Be aware that the host may not follow the script
  6.  Stay focused and listen 
  7.  Make sure the host mentions the title of your book
  8.  Look at the host, not the camera  
  9.  Be excited about your book (let it show in your voice)
 10. Women:  wear a little eye makeup and lipstick 
 11. Dress comfortably.  Wear solid colors, no patterns 
 12. Try to relax and smile 
 13. Have someone help you get miked  
 14. Have fun


Friday, December 1, 2017

10 Tips for a Successful Book Signing

On November 25th, I was invited to Joseph Beth Book Sellers for Small Business Saturday. 
Ten authors participated.  We were set up in a semi-circle near the back of the store.  

Most of the authors kept to themselves and sat quietly behind their tables.  After the event, I was shocked to learn that most of the writers only sold one or two books.  

I sold a good number of books.  Here's what I did that helped make the difference.

 1.   Emailed invitations to friends.
 2.   Sent Facebook invitations to local acquaintances.
 3.   Created an eye-catching display.
 4.   Stood in front of the table the entire time.  Yep, achy   
       feet were worth it. 
 5.   Gave away stuffed animals when three books were 
 6.   Handed out bookmarks to passersby. 
 7.   Talked to people about the local connection (a rescue 
       dog named Charlie) and showed them his gorgeous  
       picture in the back of the book.
 8.   Thanked people for coming. 
 9.   Ordered a "Budsies" doll of Maggie for the display
10.  Tied into the dog theme by using water bowls filled
       with candy.

I'm not a salesperson, but I do know you have to plan ahead.  You have to get creative.  Selling books is hard work, but if you put forth some effort, you will find success.     

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

What People are Saying about Maggie

There is nothing better than reading an awesome picture book to a child. Here are some of my favorites:

Caps for Sale, Esphyr Slobodkina
Goodnight Moon, Margaret Wise Brown
Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus, Mo Willems
The Little Engine that Could, Watty Piper 
Where the Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak
Green Eggs and Ham, Dr. Suess

And of course

What makes Maggie awesome? Here's what some people are saying— 

Jen Isbell, Pet Friends Magazine
I reviewed this book for my website and I really loved it! It teaches kids what's really important in life - and that quite often comes in the package of four furry paws!

Elizabeth Tippingbook reviewer
Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell is a wonderfully-written picture book. My little one saw the cover and begged to read it with me. She was very engaged as we read, telling Maggie what she should and should not do, expressing affection in response to pictures of Trooper, and exclaiming her surprise at certain points in the book.

I received an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased review.

Doris Settleswriting instructor and editor 
Would have been 5* if there had been a bit of foreshadowing as she cuddles up with her pup. As a rescue dog enthusiast, this is a wonderful book to teach children about special needs dogs and caring for the rest of the world. Teaches how fancy, expensive, weird experiences aren't the only ones that matter. Caring for a hurt dog and having family time with grandparents is just as important...and perhaps more so! Illustrations are lovely...very ethereal and imaginative, especially the teacher's red shoes! Excellent job and highly recommend.

Anjali Amit, book reviewer
Very successfully the author weaves a story of love and caring, of giving up and receiving. Maggie’s family chooses to forgo the vacation to rescue a dog lying by the roadside. Every choice has a consequence. So much to learn from such a simple story. Young 4-8 years old will enjoy the tale, their parents will talk of problem-solving, compassion, care for animals.  

Here's how you get your very own amazing copy: or 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Please Write a Review

Did you know book reviews directly influence the sale of books?  That's why it's so important to get reviews.  However, as an author, getting reviews are easier said than done.

I've asked friends, family, work acquaintances, classmates, picture book bloggers, and the list goes on and on.  

Many have taken the time to read Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell and post an Amazon review.  And for that, I'm sincerely honored and grateful. 

So, dear followers.  Please leave a comment or email and request a free copy of Maggie.  One or two sentences is all you'd need to write. 

Some people are not sure what to say and that holds them back.  Have no fears.  It's easy:  write if you liked (or disliked) the story, the themes, or the illustrations.  Write about  the discussion guide or Charlie's story which appears at the end of the book.  Write if you think kids will like the book. 

It can't be stressed enough the value of reviews, and for this reason, this blog post will be published on the Children's Writer's World Blog, too.  This message bears repeating.

I urge you to reach out, not only to me but to other authors.  Write a review.  The instructions are easy and can be found here:

Please know that your words are important.  Even a few words can make a huge difference.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Scenes from a Book Signing

Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell book signing 
was a HUGE success.

Here are some of my favorite photos:

Meeting young fans
and even younger fans

and meeting friends 


and more friends.  

Thank you to everyone who stopped by Joseph Beth's.  
Your smiles and hugs meant the world to me.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Book signing

For those who are unable to join the festivities, 
you can still meet Maggie.
Order the book from Amazon.  
Or, get an autographed copy at 

And check back on the Maggie Project...
we hope to post pictures of the event!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Maggie's Dog

Isn't he adorable?  

 Charlie is the model for Maggie's dog Trooper in Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell.  

His remarkable story is included as well as a discussion guide. 

Maggie and the Summer Vacation Show-and-Tell 
is now available! 

You can purchase Maggie at Amazon or get an autographed copy at