The following article was written by Daniel Pinion, author of Chop that Sh*t Up!: Leadership and Life Lessons Learned While in the Military.
I thought the hardest part was over, writing our book, but boy was I completely wrong. You put so much hard work, emotion, sweat and tears into this project and now you want to share it with the world. For me, my book, Chop That Sh*t Up! is a tribute to the soldiers I lost and I am on a mission to have them recognized properly and to help their families, so I had to figure out how to get this publicly noticed and appreciated, so their memories would live on forever. Here was my strategy.
- I listened to John, Danielle, Adrienne, and everyone at Koehler Books that provided advice and mentorship. I took notes, and researched assignments I was given.
- Once your manuscript is complete, you get to pick 10 authors you would like to share it with in our Koehler Community. Don’t take this lightly. This was one of the most beneficial pieces to any success we have received. I went to the Author Center, and I spent time looking for authors who matched the same Genre as myself (Military, Memoir). I went to their websites, looked at their book reviews, and I chose 10 Authors that I truly valued their feedback and/or advice. Boy, did it work out for me.
- For starters I received valuable feedback, praise, quotes, and most important – advice. Almost all who responded said advertising, talking about yourself, etc. would be difficult and they offered mentorship, which was well received. I found what my “hook” would be when discussing the book. All of them suggested book awards to help advertise and some even suggested which awards to submit for.
- THE BEST PART – I became a part of their community now. From friends on social media sites, to text messages (we shared numbers), to emails, we have stayed in contact.
- Awards – Koehler Author Center has a small list of awards you can enter. I also googled for book awards (i.e. book awards for military themed nonfiction books) and I followed advice from my author mentors. I entered 7 competitions; some offer book reviews as well. Some awards are monthly (odds in your favor), some are quarterly and/or yearly. Be picky on which one appeals to you, your genre, your budget (between $20 – $100) per category or competition.
- It is nice to put “award-winning author or book” when talking about it at book signing events, podcasts. It looks great on Amazon to have your awards mentioned. Below are my current awards and a quick note next to them.
- Literary Titan Gold Book Award 2023 (nonfiction) – I truly think all authors should think about this award and service. I also got the book review service, and it was exactly what I hoped people got from the book. It was spot on.
- Firebird Book Award 2023 (Military Nonfiction) – This one was monthly and can get you a quick win.
- International Impact Book Award 2023 (Military Memoir) – I won first place and will receive a glass plaque and a ticket to attend their awards gala in Arizona in the spring.
- Finalist (5-star review) in the Reader’ Choice Book Awards (Best Adult Book).
- Last piece of advice. Research the awards with as much scrutiny as you did with finding Koehler Books and you will be grateful for the results – just like with John and his team. Happy Hunting. And if you ever want to reach out, please do – Daniel Pinion, www.dpinion.com