Monday, August 4, 2014

The 90-Day Rule

First things first: congrats to Dean Haycock on Book #2!  He will be writing a book for ABC-CLIO entitled CHARACTERS ON THE COUCH: EXPLORING PSYCHOLOGY THROUGH LITERATURE AND FILM and I am excited for him.  It sounds like it is going to be a fascinating project.  It is going to be published through their Greenwood imprint, which I interned at back when I was in high school!

And now to the world of romance...

The San Antonio RWA was such a great experience for me, not only because I got to be surrounded by women who were nutty about love stories and were giving away free books (I snagged one called THE ASHFORD AFFAIR and already finished it--suuuch a good read!), but because it was a very interesting opportunity to mix with professionals in the industry and hear authors talk about their careers.

I learned one very interesting romance marketing/publicity rule, which I shared with my author Nicole the other day.  It is known as the 90-Day Rule and pretty much means that you have to do something every three months in order to stay relevant and fresh in your readers' minds, whether that be releasing an e-novella or hosting a contest/giveaway, etc.  

I'm not sure if this is a genre-wide rule and I just happen to have heard it at a romance convention, but it makes a lot of sense for all authors in terms of maintaining a strong brand and appeal.  Romance writers are insanely prolific, though, and I can picture this being tougher for, say, a literary fiction writer to achieve.  

I think it is an admirable goal for every author, and hearing about this at RWA really pumped me up about publicity ideas.  Nicole and I had a very energized talk about things she could do to promo GIRLS WHO TRAVEL, and Susan has been a total star about getting attention for GOOD CHINESE WIFE.  I would really like to be more involved in publicity and marketing for my clients.  I've been doing some publicity stuff for the agency (book PR packet for authors, the agency website and Google+ page, posting stuff on our Facebook and Twitter), but Emily, Teresa, and I recently had a chat about doing something more for the agency.  I'm not sure if it is something I can share yet, so I will hold off for now!

In the meantime, one of my favorite authors, Michelle Moran, had some good insights and ideas about marketing and publicity that you can read here.

P.S.  I didn't realize this, but apparently Steve Harvey wrote a book and talked about a 90-day rule about waiting to have sex when first dating someone.  Just FYI, these are two different 90-day rules.  I don't think the authors at the romance convention advocate that kind of stuff in their books.  ;) 


  1. 90 days? Shoot me now!

    Congratulations to Dean, and I'm glad you had such a good experience at RWA. And I'm curious about 'doing something more for the agency.' Interesting.....

    1. Haha, oh for the good old days when you sent a manuscript off to a publisher, it was printed, and you were Ernest Hemingway. Authors are mini-publicists now. Or really, more like full-on publicists.

    2. OH, I was talking about the Steve Harvey dating thing, hah ha! Just kidding. Nothing wrong with sharing in the publicity, I'm just one of those people who produces at a relative snail's pace.

  2. Congratulations to you and Dean! I didn't know you had a publishing internship back in high school! How cool!

    I'm also so curious to know about the agency's plans! Sounds so exciting!

    Thank you so much for mentioning me in this post. Even though I'm just a week into my publication date, I feel like I need to keep up every day to generate buzz. The blog tour helps, as do reviews on GoodReads and Amazon that I can conveniently like on Facebook and suddenly 700+ FB friends are reminded that I have a book out! When I post non-book-related things on FB, no one seems to care. So it still seems like people are into hearing about the book. That Steve Harvey thing is too funny. Romance writers would be out of business if they followed his rule!

  3. A 90 day abstinence period dab-smack in the middle of a good old bodice-ripper... hmm... might be a rather narrow market for that one.

    Well done Carrie and congrats to Dean on book #2 - I just love reading about these successes under Carrie's direction! seems this agenting gig fits you rather nicely. :)

  4. Ha, Steve Harvey's 90 day rule...some of my characters don't follow that, and I don't even write straight-up romance! The 90 day rule for romance publishing is interesting though. Trying to have something every three months sounds daunting, but I wonder if it helps those writers to maintain momentum?

    Great news about Book #2 for Dean. And that Susan's first week since publication has been awesome!

    Thanks also for posting the link to Michelle Moran's page about marketing and publicity. I can't wait until it's my turn to try out some of those ideas.