Author Archives: Tyler Hooper

Author of the Month

Giving Back: Father Son Duo Pen Book for Burn Fund

All it took was an act of kindness for the idea of “Santa and his Super Hero” to come to life.

COQUITLAM,BC:NOVEMBER 29, 2016 -- Nathan McTaggart poses for a photo with the book and members of the Austin Heights Fire Station in Coquitlam, BC, November, 29, 2016. Nathan wrote about Santa getting stuck in the chimney and firefighters had to rescue him. (Richard Lam/PNG) (For Tracy Sherlock) 00046527A [PNG Merlin Archive]

A few years ago, three-year-old Nathan McTaggart was making a donation to a local food bank when a firetruck pulled into the area. The fire truck captivated Nathan and later on he asked his dad, Keven McTaggart, what would happen if Santa got stuck in a chimney and couldn’t get out. The fire truck and pertinent question formed the beginnings of what would become the book “Santa and his Super Hero”; a story about Santa getting stuck in a chimney while a firefighter named Nathan comes to his rescue.

The initial stages of the book were a challenge for Keven and Nathan, particularly the illustrations.

santa

“After a couple years of looking for someone to illustrate it, Nathan’s grade 4 teacher had her class do some illustrations as a preparation for a project that they were going to do.  She showed me the images and I was totally amazed,” says Keven.  The illustrations from the book were hand-drawn by the students in Mrs. Shinkewski’s Grade 4 class at Harbour View Elementary School.

But as the two started to put a draft of their book together they realized they wanted to give back to the community by donating some of the proceeds to a charity.

“The biggest take away from the book is that the net proceeds from the sale of Santa and his Super Hero will be donated to the Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund,” says Keven.

As part of promoting the book, Nathan and Keven have visited fire halls all over the world, “We’ve done about 40 fire hall visits in and around the Lower Mainland of BC, three in Washington State, one in Mexico, four in Manhattan, and more recently, we returned from a 16 day, 18 fire hall tour of Southern Ontario and Montreal,” says Keven.

posterOn October 13, Nathan and Keven will be launching Santa and his Super Hero at the Coquitlam Express hockey game. Nathan and Santa will be dropping the puck at the opening face-off at 7 p.m. and they will both be available for book signings afterwards. Members of the B.C. Burn Fund, the Coquitlam Fire Department and some Coquitlam City Counsellors will be in attendance.

 

 

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Tips & Tricks

The Key to Standing out as a Self-Published Author: Book Marketing

You’ve finally done it – your copy has been meticulously edited, you’ve spent too many hours tweaking the design of your book jacket, and now your book is ready for distribution – you’ve published your book.

But just when you’re about to get that freshly-printed, new book in your hands, someone says it. It creeps up on you, making the hair on the back of your neck stand up, your stomach tightens and a wave of uncertainty hits you; then someone asks you the question: “How are you going to market your book?”

Abstract book store blurred background with colour bokeh in shopping mall book store.

It’s okay, breathe.

It’s a long, labour of love getting your book published. It’s a monetary and time commitment. So why then, after going through the editing process, the tedious design process, and setting up distribution, do you need marketing for your book?

Well, the reality is, when you decide to self-publish, you’re involuntarily signing up to be your own publicist (unless of course you actually hire a publicist). Much like the term suggests, being a self-published author means a good portion of your book sales are going to be dependent on the effort you put into book marketing.

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Meet the Team

Meet Book Marketing Manager Francesca Jackman

fj-blog1. How would you describe your role at Tellwell?

I’m the Book Marketing Manager, which means I’m responsible for our marketing program and the services offered to authors to help them promote their books. A large portion of my day is dedicated to working directly with our clients on the marketing aspects of their project, but I also spend a lot of my time developing the program through hiring and enhancing the resources and tools at our disposal.

 

2. What’s your favourite part of the job?

I’m an avid learner, so my favourite part of the job is that I’m learning new things every day, whether it be through authors and their work, or through the book marketing industry itself. Coming from a journalism background, I also love the fact that no day is ever the same, and the work is always diversified by the range of authors we work with and their unique projects. This job certainly keeps me on my toes, and I love being constantly challenged to learn more, and broaden my understanding of the book marketing industry.

 

3. What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?

The most challenging part of my job is letting go. I’m a passionate person by nature, and once I invest myself in a new author’s project, it’s difficult to pass the baton over to them when our time together is finished. We have the pleasure of being able to work with many authors as they begin the book marketing component of self-publishing, but at the end of the day, our main job is to empower those authors to embrace marketing. Unlike publicists, who are actively promoting an author’s work over an extended period of time, we focus on providing the resources, tools, and education necessary to have authors executing marketing strategies on their own. What they do with it from there is up to them. I now understand how difficult it must be for teachers who have to say goodbye to another group of their students each year!

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