If you know me at all, you know that being covert is not a characteristic often associated with me. I’m terrible at it , (yes, I do know my heart is sitting on my sleeve – thanks for asking) so it’s ironic that I should have been tasked with creating and implementing a marketing plan for Carina Press and not be able to tell anyone what I was doing!
My double life began with an innocent inquiry email about the Romantic Times BookLovers Convention. They wanted to know if we would be interested in sponsoring one of the lunches for the 2010 Convention. Would we? It was serendipity. The Convention is timed just prior to the launch of Carina Press, the perfect place to introduce romance readers to our new passion. I booked it immediately…and the caginess began.
Once the booking was confirmed, they wanted a description of the luncheon. I just knew that if pressed (and frankly with very little coercion) I would be compelled to blurt out, “We have a new business! It will feature genres like steam punk and be only digital format and have new releases weekly!” Not an option. Well, having seen every James Bond movie ever made, I was ready. I responded with an email cloaked in vagueness. “I’ll have to get back to you. We haven’t finalized our plans”. Ha, that would teach them to scope for information.
My next move in this marketing chess game (played by one) was to book print ads. I sent the inquiries, booked the spaces and then…the dreaded question. “What should this ad be booked under?” They know I’m from Harlequin. Why would they ask such a question? What did they know? I was certain that this level of detail hadn’t been required in the past. Again, I played it cool, responding to book it under Harlequin for now, content to be determined. I would not be forced to share my secrets.
But it was clear the pressure was getting to me. Between muttering about constellations in my sleep and drafting emails with promotion ideas that couldn’t be sent, I was desperate for November to come. And now it has…so be prepared, I might be emailing you with some crazy ideas and I certainly welcome a few of yours. I may still be a double agent but at least everyone’s in on it.