Halloween saw the launch of my new gothic Victorian horror novella, “The Seance”. This title also marked the first new publication from Dark Chapter Press. They have posted a lovely summation of the night’s festivities and I’m glad. It saves me the job of doing it. I did enough typing last night!
Last night’s online book launch for Jack Rollins’ “The Seance” was a total success. With loads of indie authors offering their books as prizes to help Jack along the way, he hosted the launch for 4 and a half action packed hours (instead of the 2 hours initially planned).
Building up the launch in the days preceding the main event, Jack had invited guests to follow his twitter account at https://twitter.com/jackrollins9280 and his Facebook page to build up the number of copies of “The Seance” he would add to the draws on the night.
Guests were also invited to register details to sign up to his newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/58PA1 to enable the delivery of e-books and paperbacks won at the event.
He opened the night early with a posted “Sound Check”, which linked to a Youtube video for the song “Burn” by The Cure, which sparked off some of the guests reminiscing about the movie The Crow. Jack returned at 8.55 pm to take things forward and as guests checked in, a relaxed tone was set as guests discussed movies and reboots etc.
The first draws took place at 9.10pm, to win a signed paperback copy of The Seance, and a copy of the e-book. This was the first of many draws which saw around 50 copies of ebooks and paperbacks from a host of generous authors being given away for sharing links to The Seance, or for buying the book, or a copy of The Cabinet of Dr Blessing.
Jack held a giveaway for the best Halloween costume selfie, and interspersed the competitions with music from The Misfits, Siouxie and The Banshees, and Ozzy Osbourne to name a few, as well as horror movie trivia questions and horror movie clips. There was even a link to an all-knowing online ouija board.
Some of the best fun was had when Jack decided to start some mischief, in true trick or treat style, and posted the link the launch party of his fellow author and friend Stuart Keane (who was launching his new novella “Charlotte” and who had donated copies of both of his novellas to the draws). Jack got his guests to gatecrash Stuart’s launch party and leave messages, including “The beer is better at Jack Rollins’ party”, which went down well. Those who did so received copies of Keane’s novellas.
This of course prompted retaliation from Keane’s camp, resulting in some great interaction and fun, as guests of both launches got involved in both of the parties.
Jack even took the time to encourage his guests to share and get involved in a Kickstarter campaign he has shown interest in, and which he has backed https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1180425123/blood-stained-windows to launch a short zombie movie in the UK.
By the end, a thoroughly exhausted Jack Rollins played out the party with The Misfits, “Hybrid Moments” and crawled off to bed. Having spent more time promoting the work of other people than promoting his own, Jack proved that a virtual book launch can be exciting, fun, packed with content and not all about “buy my book”. He used the opportunity to reveal himself, his likes and interests. He introduced his guests to the work of his ever growing network of author friends, his brother, who designed the cover of The Seance (and who got much love for it) and shouted out to his long-time writing pal Dave Basnett, author of the De Omori books (which connect up to Jack’s Dr Blessing series) and to one of his most staunch Twitter supporters, Lisa.
Speaking to Jack this morning, he has had over 90 messages and notifications on Facebook from after the launch ended, thanking him and encouraging him. People have trawled back over the timeline of the launch event, picking up on the bits they missed and hitting like and share.
Jack went to great lengths to make a truly interactive experience, rewarding not only his readers, but people new to his work. He worked the virtual environment as one would expect the host of a party to perform in person, mingling, including everyone he could, making introductions and somehow, only just, managing to stay in control.
Jack has deemed the night a success, one not measured simply by sales of his stories, but in the relationships, new and old, that will go on well after the last page of his novella has been turned.
So there you have it. I had a blast, I really did. There’s going to be a lot more like this coming as I will soon be relaunching “The Cabinet of Dr Blessing” with its splendid new cover, my entry in the “Carnage: Extreme Horror” anthology later this year, with Stuart Keane, Kyle Scott and Angel Gelique, and hopefully work in 2 new flash fiction anthologies and 3 other horror anthologies with a US publisher… It’s going to be a busy few months and no mistake.
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