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Gifts from the Pandemic

September 12, 2021

In January 2020, I launched a self-published joke book called Saltwater Sillies. I funded it via Kickstarter, and had it illustrated by a Colorado creative, Stan Yan. Writing the jokes, raising the funds, overseeing the design of the book, and releasing the book within months of reaching the funding goal was exhilarating! I was excited to share my humor with kids and give dads a fresh supply of jokes. Then the pandemic hit.

Most everyone now knows, Covid was no laughing matter. All my dreams of Saltwater Sillies being in beach resort shops, on cruise ships, Marine World, and in bookstores in beach towns sunk like a ship.

With Saltwater Sillies, the creation to lauch process felt like “hurry up and wait.” With The Legend of Lop-eared Larry, it was more “wait and don’t hurry.” This time the publication of the book would unfold as naturally and slowly as it needed to.

Typically, I’m a somewhat-impatient person. As I’ve gotten older, indecision and procrastination drive me nuts. At the very least, the pandemic has taught me patience. There were a lot of heavy life events that happened during the making of this book. For one, my father got sick with Covid and died 2 months later. My book was back-burnered for good reason. We missed the window to print the books before Easter 2021 which then pushed the next window opening to Easter 2022. Looking back, I’m thankful for that delay.

I gathered more information on how to launch a book. I read Brian Jud’s How to Make Real Money Selling Books. I tuned into Zoom Kidlit Socials through Children’s Book Insider and got tips from successful independent children’s book publishers. I laid out a game plan for posting blogs leading up to the publication date of the book (this is one of them), and I researched and found some book reviewers.

The extra time before the launch date allowed me to think outside of the box. Instead of relying on traditional methods of marketing, I played with niche marketing ideas. I focused in on rabbit lovers and found The Bunny Museum in California, The Rabbit Hole Explor-a-storium in Kansas City, and HUTCH magazine printed by Blue Bunny Books. I purchased a plush rabbit and my neighbor sewed him a jacket, just like Larry’s in the story. I printed the book cover on the back of carrot seed packets to use as handouts or up-value goodies. And instead of having a short time before publication to let people know about my new book, I’m spending months having fun posting memes and photos on social media.


So yeah, the pandemic sucks in many ways. But the silver lining is that it bought time and gave me access to resources that could help promote the book. And for that, I’m grateful and all the wiser.

The Legend of Lop-eared Larry will be officially released January 2, 2022. But if you want to be notified of the pre-release sale, send an email to: and I’ll put you on the list. Or you can get it via Amazon's pre-order. Thanks as always for your support. Can’t wait for you to read it! Feel free to share this post.



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