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by Dawn Colclasure
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What's an angle article? It's an article with an "angle" about your book (such as a character with a disability) or your book's subject (such as unusual home remedies). If you've written a book about dream symbols, for example, then you could promote your book with articles about dream interpretation, the study of dreams or how dream symbols were interpreted once upon a time. But don't stop there. Go beyond what your book is about and break into other markets that introduce your writing and your book to readers who may have never even otherwise heard of it. Consider writing and submitting articles that share stories of how people have gotten into debates over what dreams mean, the various types of books on dream meaning, or your own experiences in dream interpretation.
Another way to take angle articles up a notch is to look for something in your book that can be spotlighted in an article. For example, say the main character in your novel is a breast cancer survivor. Time your submissions of angle articles about breast cancer detection or the types of treatment available to patients, just as it happened for your character, so that they can be ready for publication in October, which is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. If your book is about historical monuments in Washington, D.C., submit angle articles to newsletters and newspapers published there.
Angle articles are great promotional tools for authors. "Anything an author can do to get their book mentioned or spotlighted in any positive way is a good thing," said Jen Nipps, author of Devoted to Creating. Getting angle articles out there is just one way to get your book mentioned or spotlighted. The best part is that you can send them anywhere. For the paying markets open to an angle article, it's a win-win situation: You have the chance to make money promoting your book! However, since promoting your book is the objective, you should send articles to both paying and non-paying markets. An article service such as EzineArticles.com is just one step in that direction to help you spread the word about your book. You're reaching more readers with news about your book, something that could not happen if you only target the paying markets.
No book promotion package should be without a list of angle articles the author can use. They get your book's title, and maybe some information about it, to readers outside of your target audience. Let's go back to that book on dream symbols. Suppose you find a market open to articles about Egyptian mythology. You can send them an article discussing the Egyptians' views of dreams, their methods of interpreting them, and that various meanings of Egyptian symbols in dreams. Make sure you mention something about your book in relation to this topic. For example: "While I was doing research for my book, Top 50 Dream Symbols and What They Mean, I came across an article about certain dream symbols that foretold doom to the ancient Egyptians." A market that publishes true stories of dreams coming true is another option; you actually have someone sharing that same thing in your book. Why not send along a brief excerpt complemented with other true accounts?
Before we go further, however, take the time to make a list of the various types of angle articles you can write about your book. For the dream symbols book example, we have the following ideas:
After you've got the article ready to go, another important promotional tool is next: Your bio. Remember to find some way to slant your bio so that it matches with your article's topic. For example: "John Smith has studied Egyptian mythology and Egyptian beliefs about dreams at Stanford University. His new book, 'Top 50 Dream Symbols and What They Mean', was published by Anywhere Press this fall. Visit his Web site to learn more about his research and book at www.com."
Remember, when you're putting together angle articles to promote your book, try to think outside of the box. Go beyond your subject. If necessary, read through your book again to see what kind of promotional angle you can take.
This article may not be reprinted without the author's written permission.
Dawn Colclasure is the author of six books, among them BURNING THE MIDNIGHT OIL: How We Survive as Writing Parents, 365 TIPS FOR WRITERS: Inspiration, Writing Prompts and Beat the Block Tips to Turbo Charge Your Creativity, and Love is Like a Rainbow: Poems of Love and Devotion. Her forthcoming books include TOTALLY SCARED: The Complete Book on Haunted Houses (co-authored with Martha Jette); Spook City; The Yellow Rose; and WIP IT! How to Revise Your Writing Like a Pro. She is also a freelance writer, book reviewer and writer for the newspaper SIGNews. Visit her online at http://dmcwriter.tripod.com/.