inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #201 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 20 May 02 02:58
    
            
  Amazon Sales Rank Update!

  December 10, 2001  1,705,232
  January 21,2002    1,477,513
  February 4,2002    1,200,759
  April 4, 2002        895,081
  May 21, 2002          98,093


We cracked the top 100,000!

I'm kind of taken aback.  I'd checked it on the 4th and there was no 
change, so I figured there'd be no change for a while....
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #202 of 228: Cynthia Dyer-Bennet (cdb) Mon 20 May 02 11:33
    
great news, Adam. I wonder what caused that leap in ranking?
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #203 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 20 May 02 13:11
    
Not sure-- I did ask some people recently to write reviews of the book, 
which they gratifyingly did!  (Thank you ari, thank you david!) Perhaps we 
went over some magic number?

We've sold an okay amount, but not humoungously...
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #204 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Fri 31 May 02 11:40
    
 Last night I was walking by the bookstore at Trinity Rep (books on the 
 square at trinity)  Normally, my book is visible right from the door, 
with 
 all the other Rhode Island books.  It wasn't, so I walked in and took a 
 look around.  Not seeing it, I asked the clerk about it.  As I asked the 
 clerk, a woman who was shopping said, "Oh I was just looking for that 
 book!" They were supposed to have 1 book left in the store.  As we were 
 talking, she said that she had seen it in the store a month before and 
 loved it, and wanted to get a few copies as gifts.  The clerk found the 
 book (it was shelved with some kids books) and the lady bought it, and I 
 signed it.  I told her that if she wanted to order some more, I'd be 
happy 
 to sign some more, and gave her my card.
 
 We'll see!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #205 of 228: Linda Castellani (castle) Fri 31 May 02 12:22
    

It just keeps getting better!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #206 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Fri 31 May 02 13:32
    
Well, it was lucky anyway. It did prompt me to start calling some of my 
other accounts.  Sold another 2 dozen to steady accounts...
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #207 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 15 Jul 02 12:51
    
I just sent out a mailing about 180 pieces to current vendors, and new 
possibilities, and just got 6 orders for a total of 84 books, including 3 
new customers! And the offer doesn't expire for another 2 weeks anyway, so 
who knows what could happen?

I'm pretty pleased!

In doing so, I also booked 4 more booksignings!

Saturday, July 20, 2002 1pm - 3 pm
Best Friends Bookstore (401)-625-1900
3964 Main Rd. Tiverton Four Corners, Rhode Island

Saturday, August 3, 2002 11am-1pm 
Walden Books (Bellevue) (401) 846-5067 
181 Bellevue Ave Newport , RI 02840 

Saturday August 3, 2002 2pm- 3:30 pm 
Walden Books (Connell Highway) (401) 846-7160 
199 Connell Hwy Newport , RI 02840 

Sunday August 4, 2002 1 pm - 3 pm 
Walden Books (Wakefield) (401) 783-0554 
160 Old Tower Hill Rd Wakefield , RI 02879 
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #208 of 228: Fleur Helsingor (fhelsing) Mon 15 Jul 02 12:53
    
Fabulous!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #209 of 228: Linda Castellani (castle) Mon 15 Jul 02 12:54
    

kafclown, you are such a good marketing person!  Can I hire you?
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #210 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 15 Jul 02 13:55
    
Thanks you guys.  

Linda, I wouldn't say that I'm so great at marketing.  In fact I was just 
talking to Donna today about firing myself! We think our marketing guy (ie. 
me) is good, but too scattered among other projects. It's hard to fire him 
though, because he works for peanuts! 

But seriously, I don't spend as much time as I should marketing.  I'm 
helped tremendously by:

a) Having a very specific market. (Rhode Island book, gift, and toy stores)

b) Having an excellent product with appeal to my market.

c) Being able to offer that product at a VERY fair price.

d) I'm also good at schmoozing.  Those Walden booksignings came about 
because I approached them and asked them if they thought it was a good 
idea.  I was (dread the word) pro-active about seeking opportunities, and 
willing to take the risk and ask and have them say "No, we don't want to."

It's a collusion of all those things, plus being lucky and smiling a lot 
when I'm talking on the phone.  They can see your smile, people!

(This just prompted me to call another store, and I booked another 
booksigning for August 10!)

Okay, maybe I am good!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #211 of 228: Linda Castellani (castle) Mon 15 Jul 02 17:28
    

I can afford peanuts!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #212 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 15 Jul 02 18:46
    
Not the diamond encrusted peanuts that I prefer!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #213 of 228: Linda Castellani (castle) Mon 15 Jul 02 19:04
    

Always a catch!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #214 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Sun 21 Jul 02 05:27
    
Had the booksigning at an outdoor art fair.  We did okay, considering.  
Sold 15 or so books.  If they had set the booth up a little better (or 
been where more of the people were, I could have done a LOT better.  Also, 
if we had made high end Giclee prints of the images in the book, I could 
have sold quite a few, I think.  (Note to self-- this is something that 
maybe I should try with Donna-- maybe we could make some serious loot.)

I was giving out free tattoos, and my shpiel that developed was pretty 
good.  "Free Tattoo?  They're removable.  They come off in about a year... 
or less.  It's a tattoo of me as a hermit crab.  Can you see the 
resemblance? Oh, thank you sir, how kind of you.  Actually, when this was 
drawn I was a little crabbier than I am today. They're also collectible.  
Guaranteed to go up in value at least 25%  over the next 25 years.  Don't 
believe me sir?  Come back in 25 years, and I'll give you a penny for it!  
Ma'am, you are never too old to have a tattoo-- you can be too young, but 
never too old.  You can put it wherever you like-- after all, it's a free 
country!  And it's a free tattoo!"

When they stopped I'd talk to them about the book, encourage them to take 
a look.

Putting smiles on their faces is the first step to putting the book into 
their hands.
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #215 of 228: Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 21 Jul 02 12:50
    

Great approach.  I need you out here, hawking for me!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #216 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Fri 6 Sep 02 08:40
    
And this is a little different kind of hawking....

I'm in Philadelphia at the Fringe Festival Sept 10-14, (go to 
http://www.pafringe.org for more details on the show (show title Acme 
Miniature Circus)

After that I start performing in NYC EVERY WEEKEND on Times Square!

Here's the press release:

 --------------------------------------------------------------
 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
 FLEA CIRCUS RETURNS TO BROADWAY!
 contact: Adam Gertsacov, 401-351-2596
 info@trainedfleas.com, http://www.trainedfleas.com
 KILL DATE: 12/31/02
 
 There has not been a flea circus on Times Square since 1957, when 
 Professor Leroy Heckler packed up his world famous show and left his 42nd 
 Street home at Hubert's Dime Museum, ending a flea circus dynasty of over 
 30 years of 10-shows-a-day in that location.
 
 "Professor Heckler left because he said the nude shows were giving his 
 fleas a bad name. Now that Times Square has been cleaned up, I thought it 
 was only proper to bring the fleas back." says Professor A.G. Gertsacov, 
 ringmaster and proprietor of the Acme Miniature Circus, an authentic 
 Victorian style flea circus that features Midge and Madge, trained fleas.
 
 Gertsacov will bring his miniscule marvels to perform less than two 
blocks from the original site of Hubert's, at the newly minted Palace of 
Variety,  a theatre and museum in freshly renovated Times Square.  Shows begin
on Saturday, September 21, and will continue Saturdays and Sundays at 12 and 
 1 pm.  If demand warrants, additional performances will be added.
 
 Gertsacov's educated insect stars pull chariots, dance on a tightwire, 
and
 perform other circus-like stunts.  While he does not reveal his method of
 training (a proprietary secret, he explains), he assures the civic minded
 that he uses only methods of positive reinforcement to teach the insects
 their routines." This is a humane show.  I treat the fleas as if they are 
 my own flesh and blood," Gertsacov says.  "And in some ways, they are."
 
 According to Gertsacov, there are only a small handful of flea circuses
 still performing throughout the world.  The Rhode Island native and his
 amazing insect stars have performed around the country, and in Canada,
 Chile, and Brazil.  He was recently filmed for an upcoming documentary on
 the History Channel.   Details  magazine called the show "One of the top
 alternative circuses in the country."   The Minneapolis Star-Tribune
 proclaimed it "A Wacky Witty Creature Feature."  And the L.A. Times said
 that "Professor Gertsacov holds the audience (and the stars of the show) 
 in the palm of his hand."
 
 Professor Gertsacov invites  all curious parties to come and see what 
some people have termed "The Most Miniscule Show on Earth."  But he asks that 
 you leave your dogs and cats at home.  Gertsacov quips,  "I don't want 
 anyone to steal the show."
 
 LISTING:
 The Acme Miniature Circus, an authentic Victorian style flea circus 
 starring "Midge and Madge, Trained Fleas Performing Spectacular Circus 
 Stunts As  Seen Before (and on top of) the Crowned Heads of Europe"  will 
 perform Saturdays and Sundays at 12 and 1 pm at the Palace of Variety in 
 Times Square, 125 West 42nd Street. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for 
seniors,  children (under 12), and the unemployed.  Call 212-726-1935 for 
reservations.
 ###
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #217 of 228: Fleur Helsingor (fhelsing) Fri 6 Sep 02 20:19
    
Oh, that's so wonderful.  I wish that I could visit!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #218 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Tue 1 Oct 02 13:45
    
I'm doing a booksigning/event for teachers tomorrow at Barnes and Noble in 
Warwick, RI (Route 2)  I think the event is from 6-9.  If you are from 
Rhode Island, stop on by!  Free tattoos, and you can hear me talk about 
the process of creating a book (and how that might be a great education 
for students if I were to come to your school)
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #219 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Wed 2 Oct 02 14:36
    
And while I was doing stuff, I sold another dozen books to a new store 
(in Seekonk, MA!) and also updated the web page to include info on author 
visits/school programs.

<http://www.riatoz.com/authorvisits.html>
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #220 of 228: Cynthia Dyer-Bennet (cdb) Thu 3 Oct 02 09:58
    
Congrats on the book sales, Adam. It seems like promoting it is practically
a full-time job. Do you ever get tired of it?
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #221 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Thu 3 Oct 02 13:11
    
Sure I do!  Sometimes doing it is hard and boring.

In order to mail the 300 letters to teachers, I had to:

Print the envelopes.
Print the labels. 
Design/write the 2 pages and the half page order form,
Have 300 of them photocopied.
Collate and fold the color sellsheet, the 2 pages, and stick in the half 
page order form. 
Stuff the envelopes (and lick them-- ewww!)
Stick the labels on.
Buy the stamps, and then stamp them.
Bring them to the post office.

Now I'm fielding the phone calls from them.
(Hey, people are calling!)

And next week I'll start re-calling our retail clients, reminding them 
it's time to place holiday orders.

It's work that needs to be done, and I'm hopefully selling books! (and 
maybe some school programs in the process!)

Despite my best efforts, being an author/publisher is not all fancy 
parties and newspaper articles!  And it's superfun to check the Providence 
Public Library and find out that people have taken the book out of the 
library!  Or have a teacher tell me that they used the book in the 
classroom and it's really great!

To quote Humpty-- "There's glory for you!"
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #222 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Sun 13 Oct 02 19:40
    
Some flea circus articles have come out recently (about my run in NYC)

AP article (on yahoo) <http://shorterlink.com/?LN2L30>

NY Post article: <http://www.nypost.com/entertainment/49180.htm> 

The Post article actually ran most of a page, and had two big photos!
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #223 of 228: Richard Evans (rje) Tue 15 Oct 02 16:45
    

Congrats <kafclown>- it sounds like the performance run is going more than
well.
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #224 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Tue 15 Oct 02 20:00
    
Thanks.  Things are going well.  The box office has been less than I had 
hoped, but hopefully, these articles will make the difference...
  
inkwell.vue.136 : Adam Gertsacov and Donna Atwood: Rhode Island A to Z
permalink #225 of 228: It's all done with mirrors... (kafclown) Mon 21 Oct 02 11:43
    
I've started calling stores to see if they need books for the holidays.

Today I sold 132 books!  And the day's not over yet!

It's a nice affirmation!
  

More...



Members: Enter the conference to participate

Subscribe to an RSS 2.0 feed of new responses in this topic RSS feed of new responses

   Join Us
Home | Learn About | Conferences | Member Pages | Mail | Store | Services & Help | Password | Join Us