So now we're less than a week away from the launch of Marcher Lord Press. If you haven't been able to tell, I'm pretty excited about its launch. I can't wait to read the first three books to come out. I can't wait to find out what the next three will be. I can't wait to see the back list that Jeff Gerke will assemble. It's my dearest hope that Marcher Lord will become an industry success story.
But it's not there yet. There's still a big question mark hovering over all of it. It'll need our help to turn into an exclamation point. There are a few things we can do to make sure this is a roaring success:
1) Pray. As Psalm 127:1 says, "Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain." I have no doubt that Jeff Gerke has sought the Lord's counsel in this venture. But he'll need us to help hold up his hands, so to speak, by praying that Marcher Lord will be a roaring success.
At the ACFW Conference, Jeff specifically asked us to pray for his shopping cart. The way he explained it was that right now, you can go shopping, put books in your virtual cart, but you can't pay for anything. Apparently the software is having difficulty working with PayPal. Hopefully things will work out in time.
Even if it does, we can continue to support Marcher Lord via prayers. We can pray that many people will find and enjoy the books. We can pray that Jeff Gerke will continue to find excellent authors with wonderfully bizarre stories. I'd say we can even pray that the success of Marcher Lord will show the rest of the CBA that speculative fiction can work and work well.
2) Buy stuff. This may seem obvious, but it needs to be stated: Marcher Lord will only work if people actually purchase the products. We can't just pray, we need to pony up the money and help support this venture financially. I'm personally planning on buying all three books the day Marcher Lord goes live. It'll take pretty much my whole entertainment budget for October, but it will be worth it, especially since you can get cool bonus books. I've been really interested in the virtual coffee table book, especially after seeing the samples on Hanna Sandvig's blog.
3) Spread the word. This blog tour is a good start, but we need to reach out beyond the blogosphere to those we know who would like these books. The more people who learn about Marcher Lord, the bigger and better it'll be. Word of mouth can be incredibly powerful.
If you need to give them incentive, remind them of the cool giveaways, the greatest and coolest of which is a trip for two to the 2009 ComicCon. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that.
4) Write. For those of us who are speculative authors, Marcher Lord Press represents a phenomenal opportunity. But we can't squander it. While we are encouraged to submit our wild stories to Marcher Lord, we should do our best to make them the best we can. That means studying our craft, perfecting our stories, making them shine. That way, when people speak of Marcher Lord Press, it won't be, "Oh, that's that small press that publishes weird stories." It'll be "That's the house that publishes fantastically weird stories that you have just got to read!"
It'll be a wild ride. But it's one I'm looking forward to.
Be sure to check out what the rest of the tourists are saying:Brandon Barr
CSFF Blog Tour
D. G. D. Davidson
Kameron M. Franklin
Todd Michael Greene
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Mirtika or Mir's Here