The new phone book is here! By Christopher Hudson

We have a treat today with a new guest post by author Christopher Hudson. He will be discussing the problem that all authors face when they add their name to the big list of published authors. Undoubtedly, millions of authors find themselves in this situation. It’s going to be interesting to see the comments as authors share their experience with this and how they all deal with it.  

The new phone book is here!
By Christopher Hudson

When Steve Martin’s character in the movie, The Jerk, see’s his name in the new phone book, he exclaims, ‘I’m somebody.’ That’s exactly what I said when I received a copy of my first book, Northern Cross.It was a long time coming … a decade or more … and seeing my name on the cover of that book actually brought tears to my eyes. But I soon discovered that having a book published is pretty much like getting your name in the phone book … it doesn’t mean anyone … other than the occasional psychotic killer who picks out your name at random … is going to notice you. (If you happen to be a psychotic killer, pretend you didn’t read this, okay?)

The hard lesson for me was that sales hinged on marketing … no one (and that included family and friends) knew, or cared about my book unless I waved it in front of them … constantly. It is just the way of the world. “Early to bed, early to rise, advertise, advertise, advertise,” is a quote I heard once attributed to a successful corporate titan … and who could argue with effectiveness of relentless marketing?

Now that’s all well and good … if you have a marketing department, ad agency, and an endless supply of money … but my publisher was just a small … make that mini … er, micro print-on-demand outfit. They told me that they depended on their authors to provide ‘marketing support’. What I was to learn was that meant ‘all marketing’ … if I didn’t beat the drum and blow the horn, it just wasn’t going to happen … and I was going to have to do that via the only tool available to me … the Internet.

Now, here is the good and the bad news about the Internet … it provides you with access to people, places, and forums that were previously unattainable … it also provides everyone else with access to those same people, places, and forums. Oh, there are methods of cutting through the noise … Tony’s site provides a lot of tips and tricks … but they usually require some technical skill and a large amount of tenacity on the author’s part … traits that I’m … well … lacking.

To me, the Internet is just another phone book … a gargantuan, electronic phone book filled with hundreds of millions of names … just being present doesn’t guarantee that anyone will ever notice you … unless they are a spammer … or psychotic killer.

Christopher Hudson Website: www.northerncrossonline.comBlog, Socially Awkward:


Tony Eldridge is the author of The Samson Effect, an action/adventure novel that Clive Cussler calls a “first rate thriller brimming with intrigue and adventure.” He is also the author of the Twitter marketing book, Conducting Effective Twitter Contests. His new novel, The Lottery Ticket, was just recently released on Kindle.

9 Responses to “The new phone book is here! By Christopher Hudson” Subscribe

  1. Dee for Author D.I. Telbat September 30, 2011 at 4:20 pm #

    Hi Christopher, Saw your name in the phone book… ;)

    Your points, oh so true! (btw, I’m not a spammer or pk ;) ) We are on the same journey and have learned the same thing: it’s crowded out here! Appreciate your sense of humor. (I looked at your site.) Wish you well on your flight!

  2. Karen Lange September 30, 2011 at 5:48 pm #

    Hadn’t thought of the internet like that but now that you mention it…I have to agree! It’s good to have a sense of humor to help the process along. Thanks for the food for thought. Have a great weekend!

  3. Alex J. Cavanaugh September 30, 2011 at 7:12 pm #

    I’m a name in the phone book – that makes sense.
    My publisher does a lot of marketing, but I was informed I needed to get my butt online and build a platform. I’ve been fortunate to connect with so many awesome people who’ve helped spread the word. It’s been almost a year and I’m still getting emails from bloggers who tell me they just purchased my book. Now that’s a cool feeling.

  4. Christopher Hudson September 30, 2011 at 7:28 pm #

    Dee: Nice to meet a fellow traveler … by the way, you’re not a psyc … naw, couldn’t be.

    Karen: Thanks … oh, and speaking of food, you wouldn’t happen to have some would you?

    Alex: What can I say … you rock! I was told to build a platform, too, but I’m all thumbs and it came out like a two-legged stool.

  5. Louis Slade October 31, 2011 at 10:31 pm #

    That’s definitely and interesting way to look at it. The cool thing is that social media sites are pushing this phone book and adding new a new dimension to it. Marketing through social media sites makes it a hundred times easier to get yourself noticed. Good luck with the self-marketing!

    Louis Slade
    Email Marketing Company

  6. Roger C. Parker December 8, 2011 at 6:48 pm #

    When I read this, I thought of one of my early letdowns/reality checks.

    I had just delivered a well-received presentation for Yamaha Audio and was at the newsstand at Chicago’s O’Hare airport, looking for something to ead, still on a high from the presentation.

    Then, right next to the pile of Playboys on the counter, I discovered a set of my presentation handouts left-behind by a fellow traveler who–obviously–preferred looking at scantily-clad ladies to reading my carefully-prepared notes.

    Oh,well. Win some, lose some.

  7. Mp4 to mp3 converter January 19, 2012 at 11:50 am #

    To me Christopher Hudson is a brilliant author although I have read only one of his great books.

    Too bad lots of other authors have to face that problem you’ve mentioned above…

  8. Judith Briles February 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

    Now, that you pointed it out, I must say I belong to that phonebook. But again, it would certainly be great that a lot of people know your “number” and even try to “call” you on the process. Well, no psychotic killer please.

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