The Power of the Group: Phoenix Publishing & Book Promotion Meetup celebrates 500+ members!
This blog is one of many outgrowths from the Phoenix Publishing & Book Promotion Meetup. What started as a small group of authors getting together to learn best practices for self-publishing and marketing our books has grown into a significant force on the Phoenix publishing scene. Sometimes it feels strange to refer to it as a Meetup, but everything started there, so it retains that name at its core.
I took over this Meetup from Lindsay Buroker in May 2013, when she moved from Phoenix to Prescott, Arizona. Life happened, and it took until January 2014 for me to start hosting meetings. We started small.
But we continued to meet, and we continued to grow. Over the last 50 Meetups, we have averaged 14 people per seminar meeting; 7 per networking-only meeting; and 5 per paid workshop (Design Your Book Already!).
The majority of our meetings are classes, where we have seminars on specific topics related to (self) publishing and book promotion. I do a lot of the presentations, but when it comes to subjects where others have greater expertise, I bring them in!
As you might expect with Meetup, many people join and just lurk in the shadows, never setting foot at an actual meeting. Their loss – because we are one dynamic group of authors. Here is just a sampling of the book launches that have occurred over the last 21 months:
Publishing is just one area of success, though. Here are a few of the other accomplishments we’ve seen from our authors.
With help from her publisher, Rita Goldner built a social media following, generated interest, and raised the more than $8,000 she needed to print her full-color children’s book, Orangutan: A Day in the Rain Forest Canopy.
Robert Scanlan was admittedly hesitant to jump into social media, but he did such a bang-up job on LinkedIn that his book is now being used to teach organ transplantation students at the USC and UCLA medical schools.
A member from the days Lindsay ran the group, Diana DeLugan is one of the best self-taught self-published authors I’ve ever met. It’s no surprise at all that her newest ebook is ranked #1 in two categories on the Kindle Store.
Of course, I published a few books over the last year-and-a-half. Still working on the novel, though!
We’ve also got a pretty strong online group presence.
The above are stats for the blog you’re reading right now.
We also have a closed Facebook group, reserved for members who have attended at least 1 (ONE) Meetup in person. This is a great place to share info about book signings and events, tips, links to helpful informational articles, and of course cartoons and author humor.
Right now, we’re also hosting the Author Blog Challenge, a 35-day (5 weeks) challenge for authors of all levels and formats. Today was Day 11, but if you’re an author and you’re interested in participating, you’re welcome to jump in now. Each day we issue a prompt you can follow, or you can write about any topic of your choice. The results have been magnificent, with some interesting and imaginative posts on all manner of topics related to book publishing, reading, and writing.
Other successes to come out of the Phoenix Publishing & Book Promotion Meetup have been three successful events:
And, never one to sit still, I’ve got more plans in the works!
Beyond that, who knows?
If you’re a Phoenix-area author and you haven’t joined our Meetup yet, what the hell are you waiting for? And if you’re already a member who hasn’t attended a meeting yet, you’re not getting any younger!
We’re planning another trip to the Tucson Festival of Books in March 2016. We’ve got another Holiday Author Event in the planning stages. And the individual meetings themselves are fantastic.
This organization, more than any I’ve ever been a member of, clearly demonstrates the POWER OF THE GROUP!
LAURA ORSINI is a self-publishing consultant who works with authors who want to change the world. From concept to publication to the first-time author’s book launch, her expertise will help you make a better book and find more readers. Laura is the organizer of the Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion Meetup and the host and creator of the Holiday Author Event, coming up on December 5. She will be exploring more about the power of the group in her coming posts for this group blog. In the meantime, read her posts at Marcie Brock – Book Marketing Maven. Friend her on Facebook, follow her on Twitter, and check out her pins on Pinterest.