If you call Harvest House Publishers and get put on hold, you hear what's known as their latest "Info on Hold" message, which is basically a pre-recorded loop featuring some of their authors giving brief, interesting "pitches" for their latest book. It creates a nice diversion as you wait. (But if you enjoy that sort of thing, then you're going to be disappointed, because at Harvest House no one ever keeps you waiting on hold for long!)
Anyway, from time to time I have been invited to record a message for their system about one of my novels. Though I appreciate the marketing opportunity, I have never enjoyed hearing my voice on tape, so I've always found the process rather painful. The pain deepens if I happen to call for my editor and get stuck on hold just as my own voice rolls around and starts talking to me. Ouch!
That's why I was quite amazed to find that when they invited me to record a little clip for my new book, I actually had fun with it. What was the difference? I'm not sure, but something about pitching nonfiction was a whole different experience. And as much as I hate the sound of my voice, I'm actually kind of proud of the finished product! Harvest House was kind enough to give me the clip to use on my website and in this blog, so if you want to hear my little 50-second commercial, click here. (If for some reason the link doesn't work, you can access it through my website at www.mindystarnsclark.com/house_audio.mp3.)
If you prefer simply to read about it, here's the script I used:
"Hi, this is Mindy Starns Clark, author of The House That Cleans Itself.
"Are you tired of constantly fighting messiness and clutter? If you're like me, you've tried to change your ways, adopt new behaviors, and become a neater person. But if that doesn't come naturally, that just doesn't work, at least not for very long.
"After a lifetime of failure at the usual methods of cleaning and organizing, I finally came to understand that for those of us who struggle in this area, there is a solution. In The House That Cleans Itself, I show you how to change not your behavior but your house, setting it up so efficiently and logically that it practically cleans itself. If you've ever found yourself thinking 'There must be an easier way,' stop wishing and start believing, because there is.
"Get your copy of The House That Cleans Itself today."
I'll never be a disc jockey or radio personality, but as far as telephone on-hold messages go, I'm in!