Archive for the ‘Marketing’ Category

Non-Mormon Reactions to No Going Back

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

I’ve had another positive review of No Going Back from a non-LDS reviewer. Heather at Buried in Books wrote in part:

I was immediately gripped by the story of Paul a sophomore in high school who knows he is gay, but also knows it goes against everything his religion teaches…. What religion? Mormon which I knew nothing about and still know only a very small part of it. But Paul is very proud of his faith and very faithful and wants to stay true to his vows to the church…. The things [Paul] reveals to [Richard, his bishop], feels comfortable telling him, feels like he has to tell him, and the way the Bishop helps him, I have to say, I’d lie like hell. Nope nothing to confess here. I’ve been very good. Never done one thing wrong. Don’t need any help at all. Especially when I’d have to face him every time I went to my best friend’s house. My sex life in my high school years was definitely my own business and I’d never have discussed it with the minister at church. It’s a very different religion than what I grew up with…. This book is not filled with religious doctrine and preachy. Not at all! I would have returned it and said I just couldn’t read it. I have my own personal religious beliefs and I’m still trying to work a few things out so anything very preachy is a big turn off to me…. Towards the last few pages, the tissue box came out. I tried to be quiet because it was 2:00 am and everyone was sleeping, except me the insomniac or reader with a great book. Mr. Langford develops the characters so well, you feel exactly what they’re feeling and at the end you can’t help but cry with Paul and the bishop as he talks to Paul from his heart. It was gut wrenching, bittersweet, you don’t want that to be the solution…. It is not the type of book I’d usually go for, but I found so much to recommend about the book. The extremely well developed characters, their growth, the various relationships and how they grow, and how faith, in something bigger than yourself, can carry you through, guide you, help you make decisions, shape you, for better or worse. I’m not sure I’ve ever had such a deep faith in anything, like Paul. I hope I do someday.

I really couldn’t hope for a better response than that — particularly from a reader who doesn’t share Paul’s faith (and mine).

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I’m a Mormon Mommy! (Blogger)

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

Work responsibilities notwithstanding, my relationship to the 21st century is (as some of you will know) a somewhat reluctant one. I spend a lot of time on the Internet, but most of it’s for specific, fairly well-defined purposes. I haven’t done Facebook or Twitter. I’ve slowly been pulled into blogging, but it was only with publication of No Going Back that I acted on my longstanding intentions to create a personal website, and later this blog.

It therefore shouldn’t surprise anyone that it was (once again) my book that pulled me into involvement in yet another blogging venue. A while back, I emailed an acquaintance requesting suggestions on ways to both (a) spread news about my book, and (b) make readers more inclined to read it — particularly Mormon readers, many of whom seem naturally reluctant to pick up a book on a topic this controversial. She suggested that I try guest blogging at some of the wider-circulation sites within the Bloggernacle (as I gather the LDS blog world is sometimes called). A few emails later, and I was lined up to post a couple of guest posts at Mormon Mommy Blogs.

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Jonathan on Television!

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

So. I finally bit the bullet (metaphorically speaking) and watched the 45-minute interview I gave for the local River Falls community television station a few weeks ago (available at this link). Looking at it, I like my voice, but there’s a lot of verbal hesitation. I also think things went better when I was actually gesturing with my hands rather than having them folded in front of me. Ah, well. Overall, it’s not too bad.

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Book Blogs

Friday, September 10th, 2010

Did you know that there are more than 50 book bloggers in Utah alone? No lie. Not to mention who-knows-how-many-more in the English speaking world in general. Which, it turns out, is the answer to the question I posed not so long ago about new things I might to do help promote No Going Back.

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Talking with Readers

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

One of the best parts of having written No Going Back has been the chance to have conversations with readers of the book: Mormons, non-Mormons, ex-Mormons; literary readers, nonliterary readers, occasional readers; those with firsthand experience of homosexuality, those with secondhand knowledge, and those with little direct knowledge. Partly that’s because I think the themes of the book are important, and I like talking about them. And partly it’s because I find it fascinating — and instructive — to find out what my own writing looks like through other people’s eyes.

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Running Out of Ideas

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

I had lunch today with Chris Bigelow, my publisher at Zarahemla Books. It was fun, as it always is. We shared gossip and talked about future projects, both joint and individual, and about my recent review of Doug Thayer’s book The Tree House (also published by Zarahemla Books) — and about the fact that we seem to be running out of ideas for ways to publicize No Going Back.

Here’s a short list of some of the things we’ve done:

Fun at King’s English

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

So I did my appearance at King’s English bookstore in Salt Lake City as part of their Local Author Showcase. And it was a lot of fun.

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King’s English Local Author Showcase July 13

Friday, June 25th, 2010

So guess what? I’m scheduled to appear at King’s English bookstore in Salt Lake City at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 13, as part of a Local Author Showcase. The way I understand it, four other authors and I will each read for up to five minutes from our books, answer questions, and sign book copies. Woo-hoo! My first reading/book signing! For more details, read here.

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Proselyting for Mormon Literature

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

Cross-posted at A Motley Vision website.

I was over at Amazon.com the other day, trying to figure out someplace to post about my book in the Mormon community. I mean, I was able to find a couple of places to post in the Gay etc. community. Surely there ought to be a place to post in the Mormon community

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Mixed News

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

The last week or so has been kind of bittersweet from my perspective. The Whitney Awards were announced, and while I was very pleased to have been a finalist, I was unsurprised to discover that I didn’t win the award in my category. (The person who did win the award, Jamie Ford, is a very fine author whose book, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, is the one I thought probably would win, so I’m not complaining.)

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