I’m Gonna Miss Winter…

Dear fans,

I have failed you. First I said I would publish Blood in the Paint toward the end of 2013. Then I said I would publish sometime in the Winter of 2013/14, but probably in February. Then I said it would be March, specifically March 19th. But today is March 19th, and Blood in the Paint still isn’t ready. I’m sorry, but seeing as how the first official day of spring is March 21st, I’m gonna miss that winter deadline.

I could offer a lot of excuses (editing took longer than I would have liked, my proofreader didn’t work out, my computer started to die and Hubby-pants had to buy a new one), but it really comes down to my own stubbornness. I need to allow more time for my beta team, my editor, my proofreader, and my formatter to do their jobs thoroughly. I need to allow more time for life to happen, just in case. I need to allow more time for my obsessive, inevitable tweaking. Sigh.

For those looking for an apology, this is it. For those looking for an update, Blood in the Paint was just shipped off to the formatter. I hope to have it uploaded to Amazon before the end of the month (I almost said ‘before the end of the week’ but I remembered to allow time for life to happen).

In the meantime, I’m sending out the ARCs and the excerpts. Check your inboxes.

And thank you for sticking with me while I work hard to make Blood in the Paint the cleanest manuscript it could be.

-Jordanna East

How I Got My Book Into an Actual Bookstore!

I cheated. Plain and simple.

Okay, maybe I just cheated a little bit. It’s not like I had a friend distract the shopkeeper (Do people still say ‘shopkeeper’?) while I shoved a stack of Blood in the Past paperbacks on a shelf between Gillian Flynn and Dean Koontz.

You see, I belong to a couple of local writing organizations and one of them recently gave me a job. Of sorts. You’re now reading the blog of the South Jersey Writers Group new Account Manager! Please hold your applause. As such, I’m in charge of stocking the local bookstores and cafes with the group’s anthologies and any other books published under their press company, Hypothetical Press. Last Saturday, the president of the group, Amy Hollinger, invited me to join her to have coffee and meet a couple of the vendors, in the hopes it would make the transition easier (meeting the vendors, not drinking coffee).

The first contact I met was the owner of The Book Asylum in Blackwood, NJ. Amy gave her spiel and the owner readily purchased five copies of the current anthology, Tall Tales & Short Stories, as well as five copies of a member’s book, What to Expect When You’re Dead.

I must admit, I was a little nervous to even bring up the fact that I had a few copies of Blood in the Past in my purse. After all, I’m not published under Hypothetical Press, I’m published under my own company, Blood Read Press. Plus, the shopkeeper (Yes, I’m sticking with this antiquated term for now.) had already shelled out quite a bit of money to pay for the other titles. But it turned out that the woman was very nice and we ended up staying to chat and we even tried to get a little writing done, which really only led to more chatting. Then a regular customer joined us and we were all having a merry ole time when the newcomer asked me what I was writing. I immediately pulled out a copy of Blood in the Past for her the flip through and, wouldn’t you know it, the shopkeeper (Stop judging me, it’s my new favorite term.) immediately asked if I wanted her to stock my book as well!

Over the moon, I handed her the other two copies in my purse and quickly decided the affiliate price would be $5/copy so she could sell them for $7 and make a little profit. Yay!

I know. It’s only two books. That’s all I had on me at the time, besides the one the customer was looking at that I’d hoped she’d buy, but didn’t. But it gets better. While discussing that I was working on the next installment in the series, she offered to host a new release signing in her store! Yippie! (Keep checking the Events page for details!)

I plan to drop off more copies in a month or so when I stop in to iron out the details of the signing, but it looks like it might be as simple as finding a friendly shopkeeper and talking up your work! I’m sure it also helped that I’d showered and dressed somewhat nicely, too.

If you plan on doing this with your own work, might I suggest the following:

  • Create a spreadsheet listing all the businesses you intend to visit. Include the name of the point of contact (AKA shopkeepers), phone number, address, email, and a running tally of how many books you last stocked them with, as well as whether or not they paid you in advance or on consignment.
  • If someone pays you for your books up front, write them up a receipt on the spot (I believe you can find receipt pads at any office supplies store) or email them one later THAT SAME DAY. Don’t dilly-dally because you don’t want them to forget about the transaction, delete the email because they have no idea what it pertains to, and then have no record of your arrangement.
  • Keep a folder where you store your copies of the receipts. You might need them to prove your arrangement to another worker in the store and you might even need them at tax time.
  • I didn’t have these at the time (It was snowing and there was only so much I could tuck safely into my purse), but I recommend creating a flyer about yourself and your work and having it on hand so the store can create more of a display and shoppers know they are supporting a local author. You might even want to invest in some upright plastic sign holders in case your books are going to be displayed on a shelf.
  • Be friendly! If you’re gonna walk in there like the grumpy starving artist we all know we can be sometimes, you’re probably not going to get anywhere. Just saying.

Now, before you guys head over to The Book Asylum in Blackwood, NJ and fight over those two copies of Blood in the Past, does anyone have any questions?

Turns Out, I DO Know My Serial Killers

Blood in the Paint Cover

My upcoming release, Blood in the Paint, is going through the final stages of editing and I couldn’t be more terrified happier. I started writing Blood in the Paint almost a decade ago, way before its predecessor, Blood in the Past, and it’s been quite a journey.

I minored in Criminology and Psychology in college and that basic knowledge has helped me tremendously. But I’ve still had my doubts. Am I writing Lyla Kyle’s background correctly? Am I right about her motivations? Am I right about her methods and mindset? Still, I did my research and I was confident I knew my stuff.

Until a few months ago. One of the new beta readers to join my gaggle didn’t get through the entire Blood in the Paint manuscript. She questioned Lyla Kyle as a serial killer every step of the way. My face flushed with every comment she’d left. “I went to school for this,” I mumbled through clenched teeth. Eventually I got over it. I re-verified all the details, reminded myself that she hadn’t even read Blood in the Past (so she didn’t have Lyla’s background info), and moved on.

Then I found this Jennifer Chase blog post that put me at ease completely. She listed the four types of serial killers and I was psyched to discover I was already familiar with them:

Power & Control

This type of serial killer experiences complete sexual gratification from the domination and humiliation of the victim.  This killer is a true sociopath and lives by his own personal set of rules and guidelines.  Many of the famous serial killers we have seen in history would fall under his type of serial killer.


This type of serial killer is compelled by voices or visions they experience and are considered psychotic.  These voices and visions compel them to kill certain kinds of people.


This type of serial killer feels a “need” or duty to kill certain types of people or “class” of people such as religious or racial groups or prostitutes.  This type of serial killer is not considered psychotic.


This type of serial killer makes a strong connection between personal violence and sexual gratification.  This type of killer can also be described as a “lust” or “thrill” killer.  This killer receives pleasure from the act and has eroticized the experience.  They generally take the time to torture or mutilate their victims.

For those of you wondering, Lyla Kyle is most definitely a mission killer. In her mind, her father’s infidelity led to her mother’s death. Having always shown a predisposition for killing, even as a child, her mother’s death was the catalyst that motivated her to seek out and seduce married men…and kill them. Also, any collateral damage that occurs during the commission of her mission killings vexes her terribly. So far, so good, if you ask me.

Next, Ms. Chase posted several comments made by criminal psychology professionals from organizations such as the FBI, the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), and the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC). The uncertainty surrounding my knowledge and my main character dissipated as I skimmed through them:

Predisposition to serial killing, much like other violent offenses, is biological, social, and psychological in nature, and it is not limited to any specific characteristic or trait. (Sounds like what I briefly described above regarding Lyla, doesn’t it?)

• The development of a serial killer involves a combination of these factors, which exist together in a rare confluence in certain individuals. They have the appropriate biological predisposition, molded by their psychological makeup, which is present at a critical time in their social development.(This sounds familiar, too!)

• There are no specific combinations of traits or characteristics shown to differentiate serial killers from other violent offenders.

• There is no generic template for a serial killer. (This quote is my favorite. The beta reader who got me down kept trying to put Lyla in a box. Every serial killer is different!)

• Serial killers are driven by their own unique motives or reasons. (Preach!)

• Serial killers are not limited to any specific demographic group, such as their sex, age, race, or religion.

• The majority of serial killers who are sexually motivated erotized violence during development. For them, violence and sexual gratification are inexplicably intertwined in their psyche.

• More research is needed to identify specific pathways of development that produce serial killers. (Exactly! And until then, we can, with some limits, write serial killers any way we choose.)

Now that I feel better, I spend my time being thankful that the other four beta readers devoured my manuscript of Blood in the Paint and had nothing but nice things to say about it. Not to mention the fact that Blood in the Past now has 40 reviews on Amazon and not one of them questions the believability of my characters. In fact, almost all of them say the exact opposite.

Have any of you read Blood in the Past? How did you feel about Lyla Kyle? Are any of you writers who have had your characters’ motives questioned? I want to hear from you!

(PS: This is basically the ‘cover reveal’ for Blood in the Paint! What do you think?)

Jerks & Irks LVII: I Wish I Had Time To Make Lists

It’s that time of year when blogs and websites are rolling out their “Best of” and “Worst of” lists like so many enumerated red carpets. I want so badly to participate as more than a spectator, but I’m a bit busy at the moment. First, I cooked my annual Christmas dinner for the in-laws. That took several days of preparation, followed by several days of decompression. Not to mention I’m doing that whole writing thing I do. I know I’ve been relatively quiet on that front, but I swear I’m still doing it. Blood in the Paint is currently with my editor and I’m working on two short stories for two separate anthologies due out in 2014. But if I had the time to TP the internet with fluffy, bouncing rolls of lists, here’s where I would start:

  • Ten things I learned about publishing. Notice I didn’t say self-publishing or independent publishing or traditional publishing exclusively. As an author, I feel it’s my duty to research all the facets of my industry to make the best possible informed decisions. I learned a lot. Most of it I’ve already blogged about along the way, but I wish I could put it one central location for my readers. Perhaps when I publish Blood in the Paint, I’ll do a Then and Now post, defining the differences between when I published Blood in the Past and what I know now.
  • Ten bizarre real-life crimes I wish I would have thought of first. We’ve all heard that truth is often stranger than fiction. It really is when it comes to crime. And sometimes I get so JEALOUS that I didn’t write about said crimes first in one of my books or stories. Grrr! (Although, I won’t be writing this list, I’ll still be composing it for a local appearance I have scheduled this spring. Be sure to check the events page often!)
  • Ten songs that made my brain bleed and ooze out of my ears. I don’t listen to the radio much anymore because of this, which means, I probably don’t even know the titles of the songs I would include on this list, if I had the time to write it. However, I’m pretty sure I could look up recent songs by Kanye West and be half there.
  • Ten books I didn’t have a chance to read in 2013. According to Goodreads, I’ve only read 59 books this year. I’m finishing up my 60th now. My original goal was 75, but that wasn’t gonna happen unless I downloaded 15 short stories, so I updated the damn goal. Don’t judge me. I might still create and post this list if I can find the time this week. Fingers crossed.
  • Ten things I hope to do in 2014. This one would be fun, because if I phrase it like this, I can take “hopeful” liberties and not worry about actually being able to do them. I hope to make the best sellers list. I hope to go back to Tahiti. I hope to wake up 30 pounds lighter. You get the idea…
  • Ten movie characters I absolutely loved/loathed. This one would be so much fun! Hubby-pants and I go to the movies quite often. The only problem is I tend to completely forget a movie the moment I leave the theater. Like, I can’t even hold an intelligent conversation about it during the car ride home. It’s scary. Even if I had the time, I’d need quite a bit of memory-jogging for this one. Yikes.
  • Ten television series of 2013. I know I seem to be an anomaly–an author who watches quite a bit of TV–so I wish I had the time to let everyone in on the types of television shows I indulge in. How I used to love Homeland, but I thought it was a letdown this year. How I also felt Scandal was a letdown this season until the very last episodes. Or how much I enjoyed The Walking Dead. Or how I had no idea how many people watched Duck Dynasty until very recently…
  • Ten nifty writing tools I hope to acquire in 2014. There’s that word “hope” again. I don’t necessary need anything, but who doesn’t love new gadgets? This is another list that would take a bit of poking around on the internet, so it’s probably not gonna happen. Maybe I can live vicariously through someone else’s list.
  • Ten non-writing projects to complete in 2014. Of course I’d have to come up with ten projects first, but sometimes it’s nice to do something outside of writing. Last summer I acquired a jug-like vase from the in-laws’ shore house before they put it in on the market and I’ve been drawing Picasso-inspired images on it. I intend to paint them and coat the vase in a protective gloss. This is the only such project I have going on right now, but I’m sure if I trolled my Pinterest boards I could find a few things.
  • Top ten favorite reads of 2013. This one goes without saying. All of us writerly/bookworm types do one. I did one last year. And I’ll be doing one this year. I’ll find the time. Who knows? Maybe I’ll find the time for all of the above ideas and pepper your January with Top Ten lists! Be afraid. Be very afraid…

*Disclaimer: No, the irony is not lost on me that this is a list and I made time to write it and post it. 😉

Interview At Creative Difference!

The incomparable Sandra Hessels, all the way on the other side of the world in the Netherlands, where her website is kind of in Dutch, has interviewed me on her blog! Don’t worry, the interview is English. Here’s a snippet:

How do you find your readers (as a self-pubbed writer) and reach the largest possible audience? Right now the three biggest mysteries of the world are: 1. What is the meaning of life? 2. Is there life outside of Earth? 3. Where are the readers? Haha. It feels like we, as authors, are all still kind of marketing to ourselves. We ‘like’ each other on Facebook, we follow each other on Twitter, we read each other’s blogs, et cetera. So, I have no idea. I hold out hope that other authors are like me and read a book a week? But I don’t pretend to know where the readers are. My research has suggested that the most effective marketing tools are Pixel of Ink, BookBub, and eReader News Today. Basically, they are services that have already found the readers, but they hog them for themselves, and authors have to (sometimes) pay them to tell the readers about their books. Figures. Do you have to do a lot of self-marketing or do you have help? I don’t really have help. A couple of internet pals pitch in here and there and share stuff for me when they can, which I appreciate with the warmth of a thousand kittens, but I don’t have a street team or an assistant or anything. I post to my blog and my Facebook author page most regularly, but I also post to Google+ and LinkedIn, and of course, Twitter. I’m a member of various reader sites, Goodreads, Shelfari, LibraryThing, and so on. And I’m always scouring the internet for websites that showcase authors and their books. According to your Twitter bio, you love killing off characters. Is it that easy? It’s very easy. George RR Martin and I should go for drinks (Game of Throne fans, the books or the TV series, know what I’m talking about). He and I would toast our frosty mugs and laugh over making our readers become attached to certain characters, even root for them, and then we break their hearts, thus giving our readers PTSD. It would be a grand old time.

If you would like to read more of my interview with Sandra, which I would totally recommend, then please click this link to her blog over at Creative Difference. You know you want to learn a little more about me, because, well, I’m fascinating.

Also, don’t forget, there’s still time to enter to win a signed copy of Blood in the Past over at Tonya Kerrigan’s blog, so you should also head over there, follow her blog, and leave a comment telling her that she’s awesome, you’re awesome, and I’m awesome, and together we’d all make an awesome-ass club sandwich of some sort. (Okay, maybe that’s creepy, but I don’t know she’s picking the winner and maybe creepy will give you an edge.)

AND, speaking of paperbacks, Blood in the Past is now available in paperback! For real this time! On Amazon! Linked with the ebook! So you can see all 32 reviews! Yay!

The Proof is in the Print! Paperback is Here!


Today is the day!

Well, today is supposed to be the day. I approved the proof of Blood in the Past for paperback days ago, but so far it isn’t available yet on Amazon. I’m told it should be there within a day or so. No worries though. If you absolutely can’t wait, there’s always Createspace. It’s there right now for $6.99. And, of course, the lovely Tonya Kerrigan is holding a contest on her blog where you can enter to win a signed copy! (Hubby-pants thinks I should sign the winner’s copy with, “Thanks for the support! Love, Jordanna East #YOLO SWAG.” Yeah, I’m not gonna do that to you if you win. I promise.) So, head on over to Tonya’s blog, read my favorite excerpt from Blood in the Past, check out her amazing review (there are now 32 reviews, 20 of them FIVE STAR!), and follow her directions to WIN! Good luck! Go!


Gotta LOVE being able to HOLD your own book!

BLOOD IN THE PAST Will Soon Be In Print!

That’s right! I’m about to kill some trees!

When I first published Blood in the Past back in mid-June, I based my decision to offer it only as an e-book on my own reading habits and the reading habits of those closest to me. I read from my Kindle and only from my Kindle. It’s the most convenient form for me. I can read anywhere, without having to lug heavy books around in my purse. I can read at night, without needing a lamp on. If I finish a book while away from home, I don’t have to twiddle my thumbs, I can select a new book from the hundreds already on my Kindle or hook up to Wi-Fi and buy another. Most of my internet peeps feel the same way. Hubby-pants and I even got my mother-in-law a Kindle Paper White for Christmas last year and she loves it.

But after I published and I was all excited and posting FIVE-STAR-REVIEW excerpts on Facebook, friends wanted to support me. (Thank you, friends!) But they hadn’t yet embraced the digital era of reading. They kept asking if they “could buy the actual book.” I felt dumb responding that if they didn’t have a Kindle, they could download the Kindle app to most devices. While true, they just weren’t of the ilk who felt comfortable reading a book from a screen, even a rather short novella.

But guys, I majored in Biology in college. Charles Darwin was my homeboy. If you don’t adapt, you die out. That being said, the lovely folks at LionheART Galleries have reformatted Blood in the Past for print and the incomparable Kit Foster has expanded the cover.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00009]

Blood in the Past will be available for purchase September 18th!

What’s even better? I can do signings and events! I already have THREE lined up for October! So…I’ll be adding an EVENTS tab to the top of this site pretty soon. Keep an eye out!

Now for the best part! I know, your minds reel that there could be more…

In honor of this announcement, you can get the Blood in the Past e-book for only $0.99 today through the end of August (8/28-8/31)!

Pantsing vs Penning vs Plotting

You guys know I’m a fairly new writer. I was a torn soul throughout high school and college. My right brain fought for the arts, my left brain fought for the sciences. Yet I’ve always had a way with words. Whether it was a literary paper or a lab report, I excelled. But when I decided to dive into fiction writing, I wasn’t certain how exactly to go about organizing my stories. So, during my writing journey, I’ve done some experimenting. Here’s how I would categorize the different methods, you know, in my own wacky Jordanna East way. 😉

  • PANTSING. Although I released Blood in the Past first, I wrote Blood in the Paint first. I wrote it “by the seat of my pants,” better known as “pantsing.” I’ve begun revisions on that manuscript and I can already tell you it’s a nightmare. It seems I changed characters’ names several times as I wrote the rough draft, and there are many other inconsistencies. While I was writing, I frequently confronted writer’s block because something I had written earlier didn’t mesh with where the story was currently going. Needless to say, we’ll file this method under: I May Not Be Pantsing Again in the Near Future. Actually, maybe we’ll just file it under plain ole No Thank You.
  • PENNING. When I wrote Blood in the Past next, I wrote it by hand, straight through, in a small notebook. This wasn’t hard, as it’s a prequel novella. I suppose this could be considered a form of pantsing, but since I already had the characters and events of Blood in the Paint in place, I just needed to write down the details of what preceded those events and extend them into their own story. Therefore, it was much easier to write. In the revisions stage, all I ended up having to do was fill in some extra scenes at the suggestions of my beta readers and editors. Not bad at all. File this method under: Will Try Again Under Similar Circumstances.
  • PLOTTING. Before I continued writing the Blood for Blood Series, I decided to take a break and work on something new: a serialized novel. To do this, I plotted each chapter briefly on a post-it note and hung it on the wall. I ended up with a series of chapters that formed five “episodes,” which made up the first “season” of my serialized series. I was so proud of myself! Until I started writing. The first episode went well enough, according to plan. The second episode? I needed a whole other set of post-its to re-plot everything before I could continue my draft. And so went each episode in the first season, rewritten in a different colored set of post-it notes. Sigh… File this method under: Waste of Colorful Post-it Notes/Thank Goodness They Were On Sale.

So what did I learn? That I can’t help it. I need to let the story flow through me…but it is helpful to have some boundaries, like the bumper lanes kiddies use when they go bowling. Just a little something to keep my story on track and to keep me from jumping from something high and windy during the revisions process.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I should probably go; my hair is really blowing around up here! 😉

The Secret is OUT About My Secret Project!

During the course of the month of July, some of you may have heard me make mention of a “secret project.” I’ve mentioned it here once or twice. On Facebook and Twitter. Instagram. Maybe even Google+ and LinkedIn. Actually, I don’t know about those last two. I really should use those more. Oh, and if you’ve read Blood in the Past, I mention the new project just a bit in the About the Author section in the back. Anyway, if you haven’t heard me mention my secret project, then you’re not sufficiently stalking me enough and you should refer to the aforementioned social networks.

No drum roll. I’ll just come out and say it. My secret project is a serialized novel about a religious cult. Cue gasps. I know. It’s kinda different, possibly a fad. But I like the thought of episodes and seasons and all that. Here is the tentative blurb:

Nestled deep in the Pine Barrens, miles from the hiking trails, campsites, and fishing spots, a path of white clay bricks, lined with birch trees, leads to the Tower. But the Church of The Word and The Way is more than a spiritual congregation living off the land. It’s a demon of many heads, plagued by power hungry members, ritualistic sexual abuse, and murder–with one young couple desperate to escape.

Beres and Kiva are young. They may even be in love. But Kiva is of age and her virginal body belongs to the spirits now. Until the leader of the Church, Cillian, discovers someone has gotten to her body first…

The Church of The Word and The Way. Where your way is blocked and your words are hushed. Coming Soon.

The Pine Barrens are right here in New Jersey (where I live) and I’ve been there several times with the Hubby-pants. We went again last week and I took a few pictures so you guys can get a feel for the place.



2013-07-30 12.11.14

There’s a baby deer in that last shot! Beautifully creepy, isn’t it? Can’t you see why I picked it? I’m sure you can. The people behind the counter at the visitor’s center? Not so much. The following conversation took place:

Me: Hi, I’m an author, doing research for the setting of an upcoming novel in these woods. Can you tell me which of the rivers that run through here flows the fastest?

Perky Female Helper: Umm, probably the Batsto River.

Me: Is it rather deep?

Bored Male Helper: No, it’s pretty shallow. The Mullica River is deeper, but it flows much slower.

Me: Damn, that won’t do. Okay. This Batsto, if I marched young children out to the center of it on a tree trunk and pushed them in, they would have a hard go of it, right? Especially if they couldn’t swim? Does the current move that fast? I’m talking 16 year olds.


Me: I didn’t say Thriller writer, did I? Frick, I always forget that part. I’m a thriller writer. (I forgot my business cards in the car with hubby, so as far as they know I’m looking for a way to march my own children to their watery deaths…)

Male Helper: The Batsto River is about fifteen feet deep in the center. I just went fishing in it last week, for perch. Perch prefer fast moving water over their gills and there were a lot in the water. So I guess if you were…pushed into it…right at the center…and couldn’t swim, couldn’t stand up…you could drown….

Me: Awesome! Thanks!

*Cheerily waves goodbye after grabbing a map and writing down BATSTO*

Sadly, however, I’ve had my fun. July is over. I published Blood in the Past in June and allowed myself a little over a month to step away from Lyla, Jillian, and Brighthouse so I could create new crazy ass people doing depraved things to one another. I had a great time working on The Word and The Way, but now it’s time to begin revisions on the first, full-length book in the Blood for Blood Series, which is already written, Blood in the Paint.

To commemorate this endeavor, Blood in the Past will be FREE all day TODAY and TODAY only! (And only .99 this weekend in case you’re reading this post late!) Need more of an excuse to pick it up? Check out another awesome FIVE STAR REVIEW over at Me, Myself & Books Blog!

QR Codes Decoded!

A couple days ago I posted a plea for guidance on Facebook, imploring people to help me figure out how to attach Blood in the Past to a QR code. Not the Amazon link to Blood in the Past, mind you, but the entire file. The only comments I received were from two groups: people saying “Why pay for the cow when you can get the milk for free” or people generally commiserating with my lack of technological prowess.

As for the first group, I don’t think they understood what I wanted to do. I’m a member of the New Jersey Authors Network and I haven’t been volunteering for any panels or discussions because I only have an e-book available for sale, nothing tangible to hock sell after the event. However, if I had a QR code of my e-book, I could charge for that on the spot by handing over my business card, with the QR code on the back, in exchange for their soul and their riding lawnmower a couple dollars in cash. Or what if I run into someone and feel especially generous and just want to give them a copy? Or maybe I could exchange my e-book in return for some other product or service? What’s the harm?

Anyway, as for that second group, who was just as bewildered as I was, come close (don’t mind my cookie breath) and listen up. I cracked it! Everyone said it couldn’t be done. That QR codes could only be attached to links and contact information and other tidbits. No, no, no, my friends. I decoded the QR code conundrum. And I’m hear to help out my fellow technologically challenged friends. After a day and a half of Googling and eye-glazing-over-ness, here’s what you do:

  1. Go to http://www.tagmydoc.com. There’s a free registration as long as you don’t want to tag more than 10 documents to start out with. Fill it out, no big deal.
  2. Upload the document you wish to attach to a QR code. I chose to password protect mine so if I drop a business card somewhere, a person doesn’t end up a with a free copy of my book without my permission. The password will be provided at the time of the transaction or exchange. (PSSTT It will brusselsprouts, all one word.Just kidding.)
  3. Download the tag (QR code) and save it to your computer. Maybe save it as the password so you don’t idiotically forget that important morsel of info later.
  4. After step 3, I would suggest you scan your QR code (right from your computer screen) to make sure everything is okie dokie artichokie. If you don’t have a QR code scanner, download an app. I use QR Droid. My phone showed the title of my book with several options, Download Latest Version, Follow Updates, and Share. When the user clicks on any of these, the password must be entered to continue. (I don’t so much like the Share option, but what can you do. Hope your book goes viral, I guess? However, this does allow the user to email the document to themselves so they can read it on their computer or tablet or whatever.)
  5. After you verify that the process works, you may want to go back to your tagmydoc.com profile, clicked on your document, and edit the Author Note so that when the QR code is scanned, there is a personalized greeting from you and not some generic baloney. This isn’t hard, the link is literally right there.
  6. As a final step, I went to www.vistaprint.com and made myself some QR code stickers for the backs of some my business cards. But, you can do what you want with your shiny new book embedded in a square of black dots and squiggles. Good luck and god speed!

So, do you already use QR codes in your marketing plan? Do you think this is something you’ll try? If you have any questions, let me know!