The Next Fifteen Minutes: Advanced Reader Copy

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The ARCs arrived in the mail yesterday. An ARC is an Advanced Reader Copy of a book, sent out a few months before publication mainly as a tool for publicity. ARCs are sent to

Still Life with ARC

book reviewers, libraries, magazine editors, television hosts, Oprah, anyone and everyone who might care to know you have a book coming out. And, of course, anyone and everyone that might be able to help spread the word that you have a book coming out.

I feel like a parent watching my child graduate from high school. Dr. Seuss said it best with, “Oh! The Places You’ll Go! You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights! You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.”

I want her (I’m already calling my ARC a her) to soar to high heights. She’s already flying along. Just this morning she took her first walk along the slackline, demonstrating balance and focus and a sort of literary concentration usually only demonstrated by advanced yogis or Cirque de

Quiet the mind, balance the thoughts

Soleil performers. Too bad I didn’t get it on video; it was pretty impressive.

Dr. Seuss continues on in his anthem to all graduates, “Wherever you fly, you’ll be best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.” My ARC took her first lap on the SUP this morning, enjoying the sunny calm of Lake Washington. I watched her blissfully negotiate boat wakes and sun glare with the grace and calm of a professional. Needless to say, I have high hopes.

Of course, it won’t be easy. I know this. The ARC, she knows this too. Steep climbs, challenging reviews, maybe even a slump, albeit brief, in sales could happen along the way. Dr. Seuss knows this. “I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you.” She will probably become one of those books, those obsessive types that constantly refresh their Amazon Author page, hoping for 5 star reviews, checking her sales ranking when she could be out skiing or running or sipping a latte with other book-friends. No doubt, she will have a crisis of confidence at some point along the way. She’ll falter.

But she’ll get back up again. “On you will go though your enemies prowl. On you will go though the Hakken-Kraks howl.” Not even the Hakken-Kraks will keep her down.

That's Mt. Rainier in the distance

She already has her sights set on climbing Mt. Rainier. Crevasses lurk there, hidden below melting snow, and other dangers too, like rockfall and avalanches and urgent changes in the weather. Again, Dr. Seuss would remind her, “Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So…get on your way!”

So here I am, sending her out into the world. She’ll hit the bookstores officially on October 1st, but for a little while longer anyway, she’ll exist as an ARC, her fingertips reaching for success and acclaim, and hoping for the very best.

Most writers would offer to give away an ARC at this point. And I should probably do the same. I started this blog after attending a writer’s conference in which I heard the repeated admonition, “You don’t have a blog? You really need a blog. Every writer has one these days.” And so I started to write a little about my writing, but mostly about other things in life that I find inspiring and awesome. But here I am, blogging about my writing again. It’s not a strong suit for me. It feels a little too metaliterary for me (I just made that word up. See I can’t even stick to the hallowed OED, or Oxford English Dictionary, for you non-bookish types).

Here’s where you, dear reader, come in. Help a girl with an ARC out. What kind of contest

Stand Up Paddleboarding

could I use for this supposedly necessary giveaway? I need some ideas here. This is, of course, assuming that any of you are actually dying to read The Next Fifteen Minutes, and simply cannot wait until the October 1st pub date. And if the only person out there dying to read it is you, Mom, don’t worry. I’ve got an ARC set aside just for you.

But for those of you who aren’t my mom, what say you? Remember, the purpose of a giveaway on a blog is to gain more readers. We bloggers are hungry for readers, for site visits actually, reflected in our blog stats and more importantly, in reader comments. Your comments are the filet mignon of blogging, they are the private powder stash, the uncrowded glassy wave curling just for you. Reader comments tell us that you actually read our blog, that you care. I’m aware just how pathetic this must seem to you non-bloggers, but trust me on this.

I could simply do a contest where I take a random drawing from all the comments left on this post. But that feels a little too much like the oldest profession, like I’m just a little too hungry for love, if you know what I mean.

So, how about some other ideas? I’m all ears. And so is my ARC.

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26 responses »

  1. Hey, I had to sign up for a wordpress blog of my own just to make a comment. So ok, guess I better start my writer’s blog…stevegiordano.wordpress.comSo you need a contest for people to win your ARCs, assuming there’s more than one. Ok, I prefer a contest that favors me. How about entrants describing where their reviews would appear pre-October? We could all review on Amazon & others, but, and here’s where my entry would excel, I would get a complete and thoughtful review, with photographs and author interview onto highonadventure.com in the Sep 1 issue. I can guarantee that because I’m the website manager and my wife Lynn Rosen is the editor. Also, we’ve had pull in the past getting favored-status writer friends an evening at Village Books in Bellingham. We would certainly try for that on your behalf. So, I know things move fast on the internet – have I won yet?

    • Steve,
      I like the way you think! Fabulous ideas. Are you kidding me? This is exactly the kind of thing I was talking about.

      You didn’t really have to sign up on wordpress just to comment did you? My mom comments all the time and she doesn’t have her own wordpress blog, although she probably should get one since she’s amazing and the world needs to hear more from her. So, hopefully that isn’t the case about your comment. But if it is, at least, now you have your own blog. Next stop? Oprah.

      • Maybe the contest is to come up with the best contest? Hey, maybe I won again…Not bad after a red-eye flight from Seattle to Pittsburgh (via Milwaukee) with 40 junior high school kids.

  2. First, congrats! How cool is that, that you’re actually holding your book in your hands??!!!?!

    Awesome.

    I’m thinking Steve should win for surviving a trip with 40 junior high school kids LOL
    What about something related to 15 minutes? photos or a blog post on their own blog – about the next 15 minutes gets them an additional entry – keep it open for a week – post the giveaway on a few of the giveaway blog sites….

    Oh, and of course Oprah – – oh, wait, missed that window – Damn.

  3. Kim…ARC’s are SOOOOO exciting to hold in your hand! I am so looking forward to reading it…might just be able to sneak it in my Masters in Creative Writing reading list when I start school this month! Good luck and I hope John doesn’t mind you sleeping with it under your pillow~!

  4. Kim…ARC’s are SOOOOO exciting to hold in your hand! I am so looking forward to reading it…might just be able to sneak it in my Masters in Creative Writing reading list when I start school this month! Good luck and I hope John doesn’t mind you sleeping with it under your pillow~!

  5. Gorgeous pictures! So excited you have Miss ARC in your palms!
    I don’t know about a contest… but, I do think she might enjoy the view from North tip of Lake Washington admiring numerous floatplanes landing and taking off all day long. Having been appreciated by all the hands foreign and local that stream through harbor. I feel like it may just give number of adventurous passerbys just enough of a taste to perhaps want to have one of their own come Oct.1….. Including me!

    • Good idea Anna! I like it. Perhaps I need to wrangle a few more ARCs from my publisher. How’s the flying been? Hopefully the wx stays clear for you guys. Now that July 4th is right around the corner, maybe we will officially get a real summer. Fingers crossed!

  6. Love this post. I love that your ARC is already so busy. So fun and funny. I’ll put a thinkie on your question . . . I’m sure there’s some fun, cool, new things that haven’t been done before. I’ll get back to you. In the mean time, please make sure your ARC is wearing sunscreen.

  7. I love your photos showing all the places where your ARC has “traveled.” You’re so funny. So, what if you had a blog contest in which you took ideas about the most interesting adventure your ARC could go on, and then post those ideas and let followers vote on their favorite? The person with the winning idea gets a free book. Hmmm, might be too much trouble… which may be why I seem to recall doing a giveaway in which I simply picked from commenters at random. Not so much that I was too hungry for love, but maybe too lazy to think. 😉

    • Cara,
      You are on to me. That’s why I’m garnering suggestions from my fab readers. I like your idea! It would have to require a little photoshopping. The ARC at the summit of Everest? Sure. Rafing the Grand Canyon? Absolutely. Great idea.

  8. Am excited for you; what a fun thing to have a “baby” to nurse and raise! Took me awhile to come up with this but watching the Today Show it hit me…..the best idea on how to promote the book wins!
    My idea…..stand next to Lenny on the Today show with a sign that says….Read “The Next 15 Minutes”
    They always show Lenny!!! Usually about 8 am. Will make enough people curious to go check it out!!!
    Good Luck with all of this….loved the blog…was fun!

  9. Oh! Congratulations Kim. I can’t imagine how amazing it must feel to feel the pages in your hand. Wheeee! I’m not sure about a contest idea… that’s a tough one. I do know I’d likely enter it as I can’t wait to read it. :0)

    I like the idea above about relating it to 15 mins somehow.

      • Ha, Ha, Ha!!! I am already promised my ARC and all I had to do was raise this child, keeping her safe until she decided to risk life and limb every day and then write about it! Now, she is risking the life of “Then Next Fifteen Minutes”, her beautiful book and brainchild by exposing it to all the dangers out there. You know what, I EARNED this book with all my worrying.
        Kim’s Mom, Clare

  10. Hi Kim,
    A really fun post, and a great idea! Not sure I understand the contest idea- is it just a matter of giving you ideas for promotion? If so, I think you could tap into ski and outdoors people. Have Outdoors magazine interview you, sell copies at all the ski resorts, do a book signing at REI. Write for Outdoors magazine.
    Also do radio and TV interviews. Write for the Seattle Times. People will want to read your work because you live around here.
    People I see interested in your book are: post-baby boomers getting old enough to ponder mortality and what life might mean; people who are facing or have faced health crises; skiers; adventurers of any sort; readers of Tim Cahill’s books; readers of women’s books– what was that one about the woman rafting the Yang-tze while having hot flashes? That’s a start, anyway…
    Anne

    • Love Tim Cahill. Just wanted to pop in and say that, Anne, because so many people I meet don’t know who he is. So when I come across someone who does, It’s like finding a kindred spirit. Oh, and, the idea of a book about a woman rafting the Yangtze while having hot flashes – that I’ve gotta read. 🙂

  11. Man, this is what I get for going on trips. I miss stuff like the chance to beg for a copy of your book! Guess you have to write another one just so I can have a shot at the ARC for that one now…

  12. Pingback: Win an Advanced Reader Copy of The Next Fifteen Minutes | Kim Kircher

  13. Pingback: Last Chance to Win an Advanced Copy of The Next 15 Minutes | Kim Kircher

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