by Peter Raymundo

     So it's now mid-February.  I have taken on many, many new tasks over the last month and a half, and they all primarily have to do with "marketing" Third Grade Mermaid.  I have taken to the Facebook Fan Page a lot more than to this blog for updating things simply because Facebook is just unparalleled for connecting with other people.  

     That said, if you want to follow me much more closely, I recommend "Following" the Third Grade Mermaid Fan Page at www.Facebook.com/ThirdGradeMermaidBooks/.  That's basically the hub of all things Third Grade Mermaid.  But for now, let's get up to speed on what I've been doing, because there may be something to learn from it.

In the Barnes&Noble near the Florida Mall.

     For one, Third Grade Mermaid is finally out in stores.  It was released on January 31, 2017.  We went to the Barnes&Noble near the Florida Mall to see it on the shelves, and were pleasantly surprised by the manager wanting me to sign the books while there.  This also put several copies in a better position.  Needless to say, I have gone to all of the B&N's around town signing the books to help get them better visibility.

     Another HUGE happening was the Book Release Event held at the West Osceola Library in Celebration, Florida.  I was hoping to have at least 50 people there, but it was successful way beyond what I could have thought.  The line was nearly 200 people long at times, and despite moving as quickly as I could, many people waited over an hour to see me.  That was such an overwhelming feeling, it's hard to describe.  If I had to use just one word though, it would be "thankful."  Thankful that I could bring so much joy to so many kids.  Thankful that the event turned out so well for Lisa, the incredible children's librarian who set the whole thing up.  And thankful that people actually like my work. 

Addy and friend.jpg

     Ok, so the other super important thing I have been doing is a series of School Visits.  At the moment I am not charging (or making) any money for the visits, but they are helping to promote Third Grade Mermaid in a critical way.  So far I have had 4 schools in a row sell out of 100 copies in a single day.  And I think this took everyone a little by surprise.  Even the Scholastic warehouse in Lake Mary, Florida sold completely out of Third Grade Mermaid and had to get more just to fulfill the order at another school.  

     At the moment I handle all of the communication myself, and with the massive influx of requests of late, it has become a pretty tall order just to organize my days.  In fact, I have never in my life used any kind of "Daily Planner" or anything like that, but I now have so many appearance requests over the next few months that I simply had to get one.  It's worth it though.  Besides spreading the word about Third Grade Mermaid, just meeting so many kids who utterly adore that book is nothing less than life-affirming.

Me at Flora Ridge Elementary during their Scholastic book fair.