Monday, August 07, 2006

A Book Promotion Don't-Do

Did you see the news item on today, "Marie Osmond did not attempt suicide?" Ouch.

A tabloid ran a news story that, evidently, Marie's publicity camp disputed. The result was that story that offered Marie's rebuttal to the tabloid's story.

Unfortunately, ran that rebuttal in the most cringe-worthy way imaginable. They stated a memorable negative in a way that brings back memories of Nixon's "I am not a crook" and (to paraphrase Clinton) "I did not have intimate relations with that woman."

When you're in the midst of a book promotion campaign, you never want to answer a confrontational question (such as, "Did you try to commit suicide?") with a negative, "I didn't try to commit suicide." That would be repeating a negative, and if you do that, you can almost guarantee that the negative is the quotation people will remember.

Instead, you always want to state a positive. You might say, "I was very healthy and feeling quite positive, thank you for asking." Or, "I briefly experienced a bad reaction to my medication, but thank goodness, the doctors handled the whole affair beautifully and I'm fully recovered now."

For the sake of your book publicity campaign, steer clear of the trap the confrontational interviewers might be setting for you. Yes, some interviewers may want to be Howard Stern and infuse your book promotion campaign with questions that will make you squirm and want to walk off in a huff.

The best response is to stay calm and friendly in all interview situations that you find yourself in during a book promotion campaign. Don't take the interviewer's hostility personally; it's not meant personally. It's an act, and now that you know how to respond to it, you'll quickly take the wind out of the interviewer's sails and put an end to the negativity.

Just remember that headline about Marie Osmond, and be sure that doesn't happen to you. (And, for the record, I do believe Marie's publicity camp. She has a strong support system, and I have every confidence that it's working for her and will continue to do so in the future. But...please. No more feeding into a reporter's negativity, because I don't want to read anymore headlines like this one about Marie Osmond or anybody else.)