As I mentioned in the page called, “Lynn’s story,” he soon became unable to work in his chosen profession as a carpenter after he was diagnosed with MS. He was in his 40’s at the time and wanted very much to continue to work. However, his physical limitations and his fatigue made working in a physically demanding job impossible. So he looked for other options and discovered he had a talent for writing.
Lynn has written three books and is on his fourth. Only one has been published so far, Rising Tide. His publisher did a great job of supporting him during the editing and publication process; however, they do not do a great deal of marketing the book after it is released. They sent out the initial press release and then sent him information about how to market the book himself through book signings and giving talks. They pretty much leave it up to the author to promote himself.
That’s fine if you can travel across the country or have the energy to do talks and book signings but it’s very difficult for Lynn to do that now. Since we do not have a way to transport his powerchair, he has to use a manual wheelchair for trips. It’s not very comfortable for him after about an hour, especially since he cannot adjust his position himself. Then there’s the difficulty actually signing a book. He puts his signature in the forward but truthfully, it’s a scribble. Also, he has to be catheterized intermittently. He can’t do that himself which poses a problem in a public area. Do I take him into the ladies’ room or do I go into the men’s room? Most public places do not have a one-room restroom where we can into it together.
So… instead of going “on the road” he’s marketing to book clubs around the country by email. I’m very proud of him. I’ve written a draft that he can copy and paste and he searches out book clubs and sends them information about his book himself. He offers to send them a free copy to consider for their club to read. It’s a very slow process. He’s sent out over 200 offers and so far we have mailed out 10 books. Most don’t respond but if he keeps at it, he will eventually get his book out into the book reading community and, who knows, maybe that will generate book sales.
What I do know though is that it gives him purpose each day. He has a job to go to now. He can only tolerate doing so much each day, but it gives him something to look forward to when he gets responses and it gives him work to do.
On the other hand, it also gives me work to do….I type the drafts, I record where he sends letters on a spreadsheet, I mail out the books, respond to any emails he gets, help type in information if needed… Whatever he does, I have to be part of it for him to be able to do it. Many people who do not have experience with being a caregiver, do not realize that there is no part of that person’s life, hobbies, interest, care that you do not take part in. And while I want very much for his writing to be successful, at times, it just becomes one more job for me to do.
I’m keeping my fingers crossed though on this marketing campaign. If he could become known and his books provide him some income, I might just be able to get that van I want. : ) Want to buy a book?
Seriously though, check it out if you’re interested. Go to his website for more details www.lynnsteigleder.com It’s a good read.