Monday, March 20, 2017

Book Launch Q&A: Randi M. Sherman, author of Big & Fabulous: The Life and Times of Brenda Cankles

Randi M Sherman is the award winning author of humorous fiction books.

With an eye for detail, an ear for well-tuned dialogue and an incredible grasp of the obvious, all honed while performing stand-up comedy in Los Angeles and improvisational theater in San Francisco, Sherman adds just enough bawdiness to deliver character-driven contemporary novels that will have the reader laughing, thinking and connecting with the characters in her books.

A native Californian, Randi makes her home in California's wine country. Trying her hand at country living Randi describes herself the Eva Gabor of the Sonoma/Napa area.

Randi earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from Chapman University.



About the Book:

The time for BIG & Fabulous, The Life and Times of Brenda Cankles is now! The emphasis is on positive body image, Big & Fabulous is a truly entertaining story that’s strongly written, funny, insightful and bitingly smart. Inside it’s covers, readers will find no shortage of acidly hilarious
accounts of the highs and lows of living life inside a big and fabulous body.

Imperfect, impervious and improving Brenda Cankles is an unlikely heroine. Unfazed by the enduring censure of society, she is determined to realize the fabulous life that she has always believed is her destiny.

Brenda’s story – written in unflinching first person – is utterly unvarnished. Here, find a fantastically real person, sometimes struggling to fit in, but mostly giving the rest of the world the mother-lovin’ bird. From her clunky childhood, through her stumbling yet optimistic adolescence to her full figured and unapologetic emergence into adulthood. Brenda is a special brand of warrior. She is big, bold and beautiful. While the quirky cast of characters who surround her is eternally insistent that Brenda live her life in the background and fit into society’s mold, she will have none of it.

Author, Randi Sherman’s experience as a stand-up comedienne is evident as she delivers, BIG & Fabulous, The Life and Times of Brenda Cankles, the hilarious, often laugh-out-loud novel about the inner most thoughts Brenda Cankles, a very real character who is confident and brave enough to expect the world to accept her on her terms.

BIG & Fabulous, The Life and Times of Brenda Cankles is Sherman’s fifth novel, her fourth THE LOBBY has won 17 Awards for Humor and General Fiction.

Watch the book trailer at YouTube.


Amazon | Barnes & Noble

After your book was released, what was the first thing you did when getting ready for your book launch? 

I wrote a detailed promotion plan. In it, I compiled contacts, emails, websites, tv & radio producers and bloggers to contact. I made my social media plan and who, what, when and how to contact everyone and I created a timeline and budget for promotions and ads.

After that, what was your next step?

After celebrating - I wrote press releases and launched my promotion plan

Did you do anything different to spice up your website in lieu of your upcoming book release?

In preparation of the launch, I refreshed my website, moved things around, added new colors, added new pages for the new book and included any early reviews.

Did you ever consider using a PR agency to help you promote your book or did you prefer the DIY route?

Promoting an indie book is an uphill battle as it is. I used a PR agency in the past. It fed my ego more than it helped promote the book. It was expensive and I found that they used tools that are available to me if I looked hard enough for them. Their “contacts” didn’t really pay off. This time I started early and built a solid contact list planned to use tools that worked in the past and took time to develop new ones. I became my own PR agency. Let me warn you. It’s practically a full time job.

Were finding reviews a top priority for you and, if yes, how did you approach that? 

Reviews are important and they’re helpful and I work hard to get them, however it is not THE top priority for me.

What are your views on social media for marketing your book?

I loathe using social media but it’s a necessary evil for book promotion. It’s always changing and the learning curve seems to be a vertical line.

What social media has worked best for you?

What works for me may not work for other authors. I suggest that each author look at the statistics and metrics. Some author’s readers use twitter, or Instagram while other authors’ audience uses facebook or pinterest.

Did you write a press release and do you think it worked for you?

Yes, press releases work for me. I write several - each geared for a different audience and for different reasons and goals.

Did you revamp your author’s page at Amazon in any way to prepare for the launch ( 

Just updated it a little - not much

Did you have other books you offered for free in order to help sell your present book?

I do giveaways all of the time.

Did you set up book signings and, if so, how did that work for you?

As of yet, I have not set up any book signings for Big & Fabulous, The Life and Times of Brenda Cankles. Last year, I did a do book signing at Book Expo America for my book The Lobby. People seemed excited about the book and I believe it received a few reviews from it. I felt like an author. It was a great experience.

Did you create a book trailer? 

Did you time your book launch around a certain holiday? 

I did not launch during the holiday season.  I like to launch my books in late winter or early Spring - they are great beach-reads.

What was the best money you ever spent on your book launch?

Champagne, press releases boosts and my trip to BEA.

Any tips for those authors wanting to set up a successful book launch?

Plan your promotions, focus on a set audience (you can always expand from there) and be patient. Smile politely and say “you should” when everyone seems to say “You know, I could write a book,” as if it’s an easy thing to do. But most importantly - celebrate your accomplishment. You wrote a book. It’s published. You are friggin’ a super hero!

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