In 2011 I was promoting my recently released Dying Days zombie novel, and not getting far with it. I was tossing random guest posts, ads and shouting from my Facebook roof BUY MY BOOK! DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL, BUY MY BOOK!!!
It didn’t work.
In 2012, while talking with fellow zombie author Mark Tufo, we both realized how badly our sales slipped once summer began. I got it in my head to do something about it. What if Mark and I helped one another to promote our latest books? Dying Days 2 had just come out to lukewarm sales. But then I got even more excited. If two authors could help, imagine what 6 could do? We immediately went about tossing names into a virtual hat to see who would be interested.
The first Summer of Zombie Blog Tour was born, with Mark and I joined by John O’Brien, Ian Woodhead, TW Brown and Dave Jeffery. We each did a few posts (guest blogs and interviews) and got them out into the blogisphere.
Sales improved for June. We all left it quite happy.
In 2013, Mark and I talked about it again. I wanted to go bigger and Mark wanted to sell books, so it was a no-brainer (zombie pun intended). With Dying Days 3 released, I also wanted to move units and buy nice shiny things for myself. Last year I invited a total of nine of us: Mark and I, John O’Brien, Bryan Smith, Joe McKinney, TW Brown, Julianne Snow (our first female zombie author!), James N. Cook and Kirk Allmond.
I can’t speak for everyone, but I know my sales improved in June last year. It was my best month in 2013, and that includes Christmas rush, too. And my Dying Days series started to really sell and hasn’t dipped yet, which I know I owe to the tour.
There was even a smaller Winter of Zombie blog tour in 2013, which we’ll do again this November. Maybe it can grow as big as the summer version.
Because this year (2014, for those without a calendar) we went straight from 6 to 9 to 32 zombie authors. I won’t list them all here because you can find them on the Facebook event page and the links list (listed below), but suffice it to say, I’m having a blast with so many great authors. All told, I had 78 authors trying to get on the tour, which blew me away. I had to pick a nice mix of the ones who’ve been with me before (Mark Tufo, John O’Brien and I are the stalwarts who’ve survived every tour so far… and Julianne Snow and Kirk Allmond return for a second year, while Ian Woodhead returns after a year’s absence – Lord only knows where he was).
It was fun to handpick who I wanted on the tour. Some of the authors were new to me, which was important. Others were names I knew and wanted to learn more about (like Jack Wallen, who is conveniently posting this today). I wanted a mix of women in as well, and the ones on the tour are some of my favorites.
And, of course, I’ll have a new release to coincide with the tour. Dying Days 4 will be out by the end of the month, so if you haven’t been keeping up, now is the time to catch up and see what you’ve missed.
I hope everyone is enjoying the many giveaways, insight into the authors and meeting fellow readers of zombie fiction this year.
What will next year bring? Who can say. I do know it will likely involve me, Mark Tufo, John O’Brien, and a ton of backstage planning on my part again to make June
2015 another great Summer of Zombie event.
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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2014, with 33 of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.
Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser… and pick up some great swag as well! Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them! #SummerZombie
AND so you don’t miss any of the posts in June, here’s the complete list, updated daily.