Hi, I was asked to elaborate on a few things I've done to place my book for international sales. Here go the basics.
Be patient and optimistic.
This is not a one shot deal. You will need to attend to it weekly or at least monthly. [It will put you behind on your REAL writing sched. But, that's okay, you want people to be interested when your next work is available not go, "Neale who?"]
Register with Ingrams or another major national and international bookstore distributor. My initial publisher Infinity Publishing, near Philadelphia PA [http://www.InfinityPublishing.com] offers this service at a small additional fee. Do call Infinity for great self-pub/POD service [you retain all rights at all times, bookstores CAN return books, and more] 1-877-BUY-BOOK. They have a FREE BOOK, you can call for, which explains and shows you pretty much everything you need to know about making your book. So far, I haven't heard of any other company that hasn't made my hair stand on end for bad or strange practices. Their good and don't cheat.
Always make certain your book IS available to buy. Purchase the first copy yourself like your readers will. My FIRST BOOK, my first Amazon copy, my first BN copy, my first ordered in store at WaldenBooks copy. After that, you can probably stop shopping your own.
Manually go through Yahoo, MSN, DMOZ, and the like and register at SUGGEST A SITE to any audience that speaks English [United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, India, Canada], it'll get picked up by many Europeans and others who read English.
Hand mailed book to Amazon and Barnes & Noble, work with print company that'll register your book with these mega-outlets as part of their regular pipeline [Infinity Publishing] at no extra exorbitant fee.
Go online and contribute to sites: opinions, writing works, etc but make certain you leave your brand. [My brand is my name and my pub name: Neale Sourna, PIE: Perception Is Everything.] Sometimes you can't leave an http link to your site -- against some site rules. I have to leave my name, a tag or motto is good and often encouraged by group/chat sites, mine is Remember -- PIE: Perception Is Everything.
If you start your own pub company and register with http://www.LightningSource.com[POD and ebook arm of Ingrams – DOMESTIC and INTERNATIONAL sales]. "Hobble" is available online at Powell's, Amazon, BN, etc. domestically and internationally through PIE: Perception Is Everything [my pub company, http://www.PIE-PerceptionIsEverything.com or http://www.PIE-Percept.com], which is registered with Bowkerlink.com [your ISBN registration hookup] and Ingrams/LightingSource.
[NOTE: they are in the middle of an inventor lawsuit re: POD; but, they are THE company to hook up with to position your book for ordering--like through your local Waldenbooks or Mom and Pop within a few days of order, even if it's not kept on the shelves. Most books aren't anymore.]
Putting your book info into your publisher's personal area at Bowkerlink is great. Its info, graphics, and release dates on your book will cycle onto the net and to Books-on-Print [important stuff] to notify booksellers and distributors that your book is coming or available -- the main reason "Hobble" and my other [as yet unfinished] works which are preregistered show up on some lists. Things like: "All Along the Watchtower", "Aegis", etc.
Oh, yeah, and patience. The Infinity POD version of "Hobble" came out in October 2002 and I started registering and announcing it to groups right away, it's taken this long to show up on internationally and Powell's, which isn't so long since I was doing it from scratch and well-read marketing ignorance. There's nothing like experience but reading is a great way to start.
Do check out http://www.PRWeb.com, they are indispensable as your press release feed. Pay them the $10 dollars so you get your total number of hits, pay them more for the links.
I dropped off copies at my local library, but Cleveland Public Library is huge and has as yet not registered the copies into their system.
Register your site and your general info as an author in SUBMIT A SITE at Google!! In December of 2002, you'd get no hits or maybe a handful of index pages when you entered "Neale Sourna" or variations of "Neale Sourna Hobble", today I had 5830 show. Way cool.
Have a website, even if it's only one page that welcomes your readers then points to Amazon. But, do try to give it more info and personality than that. Get a school or college kid to keep it for you, if you can't figure HTML.
Be patient, and industrious. Learn everything you can about marketing, especially book [fiction and nonfiction] and internet marketing. Don't rely on your pub company to do any major marketing for you for your full career or the full career of your book. That's your job or the publicist you handle.
Oh, yeah, two very special words on any marketing – Paco Underhill. He's an urban / surburban anthropologist who studies us, yes, you and me, while we shop. His "Why We Buy" is required reading even before you design your cover.
I hope that's helpful.
Remember -- PIE: Perception Is Everything