My head is still spinning. Hidden Traps is OUT!

It’s been two weeks since my nonfiction book Hidden Traps was released, but I haven’t had a chance to breathe. The lead up to release was filled with preparation of supplementary materials and handouts, guest blog posts, and interviews for radio and video broadcasts. On release day, I ran my first webinar. This weekend, I’m presenting at the RWNZ conference on this topic.

OMG, IT’S THIS WEEKEND!

There’s so much to do, and this is on top of my normal schedule. What exactly have I gotten myself into?

Let’s take a step back and look at where this book started and the steps along the way.

For me, technology is not something to be scared of. My husband and I are scientifically minded and embraced technology when we can. But I’ll admit that I have always taken certain steps to protect myself and my family. I wouldn’t call it paranoia — just being careful. Trust me, there are others out there who take personal and internet security to extreme levels. With regards to my personal security, I could possibly be better, but I’m a practical woman. I’m a massive fan of the KISS method: Keep It Simple, Stupid.

So, the strategies I instinctively use are about simplicity and practicality. Don’t randomly share your address or phone number unless you know exactly where they’re going and what they’re going to be used for. Keep your email address as private as possible. Don’t say anything on public forums that could come back and bite you in the ass. Don’t be friends with just anyone — stranger danger is real and the predators are lurking.

It’s all simple stuff. I grew up with these basic security concepts. Granted, I didn’t have the internet to contend with, but I distinctly remember the strange truck with Christmas-tree lights pulling up outside the house while I waited for my mother to lean over and unlock the car. But I digress.

Judy L Mohr with her book Hidden Traps.

Judy L Mohr with her book Hidden Traps.

It was a shock to discover that what was instinct to me wasn’t instinct to others. I would mention things like privacy protection at one of my writers’ groups and the entire room would be filled with blank stares. I’d direct them to the WhoIs.com website, and it was a collective gasp as all of them realised that they were releasing private information onto the internet and didn’t even know it, all because they wanted to save a few extra bucks and ignored the fine print about what privacy protection really did. To me, it was a no-brainer. I didn’t know about WhoIs searches when I signed up for my first domain, but when that fine print said “hide your private details,” I just clicked the checkbox and paid the added bill. It was instinct.

Nearly four years of accumulated knowledge went into writing Hidden Traps, and I’ll be the first to admit that I still have many things to learn. Legislation is rapidly changing to keep up with the internet, and software is constantly being updated. But if I can help just one person protect themselves and their reputation on the internet, then my job is done.

Those who know me will testify that I’m always willing to pass on my hard-won knowledge. Why can’t others benefit from all the research that I do? Why shouldn’t I help others understand what can be quite complex? Why can’t people learn from my mistakes? I hate to see people struggle when I know that I can give them a little bit of insight that can make their lives easier.

I’m not going to apologise for what is my nature. I have knowledge and expertise. I need to share it.

So, Hidden Traps was born.

Marketing, Conferences, and the Whirlwind Ride

Okay, so every writer is eventually faced with this nasty word: marketing. If there is one thing that I have learn about marketing is that I have NO CLUE what I’m doing, but I’m still enjoying the whirlwind ride for what it’s worth.

For some time, I’ve hosted my own radio show about science. The whole premise of the show is talking about different aspects of science and explaining it in a way we all can understand. (Noticing a trend here?)

Anyway, my producer also runs another show, Jessie’s Coffee Shop. It’s a show about books and the people who write them. So, when Hidden Traps was launched, Jessie insisted that I come on the show. It was as fun as always.

Screen capture of YouTube Interview

Me on The White Room

When I mentioned in my various Facebook groups about the upcoming release, hands reached out to me. E. Rachael Hardcastle had me on her live video broadcast to talk about my writing process and the path I’ve chosen to take for publication. Others have asked me for interviews, with those articles coming out soon (I hope).

I’ve wrote a guest blog post for Joynell Schultz, talking about the myths behind social media, breaking down what the different platforms are actually useful for. This is on top of all the blog posts for this site and for the Editor’s Blog on Black Wolf Editorial Services.

On launch day, I decided to dabble with technology and ran my first webinar. I’m so glad that I can think fast on my feet, because I had some technical difficulties on that day, but I muddled through — successfully so.

And there is the RWNZ conference to be held this weekend. Of all the activities that I have done on the marketing trail of this book, I’ll gladly admit that this particular one actually scares me. I have no issue with public speaking. In fact, I’ve given a large number of presentations over the years (talking about science, software, writing, editing, and the list goes on) — I’ve been singing and dancing on stage since I was 6. No, what scares me about the RWNZ conference is actually the networking aspects. I know I NEED to do this, but there will be agents and editors there. Granted none of them will likely have influence over my own writing career (the conference is for romance writers and I don’t write romance), but the industry is actually smaller than people think. If I do something wrong…

I have to keep reminding myself that I do know what I’m talking about — that I do have unique knowledge worth sharing — but that doesn’t help the nerves any. Word of mouth can KILL a business.

I know I’ll be fine, but this whirlwind ride… I think come Monday next week, I’ll be sleeping.

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