There is an idosyncrasy about book publication dates you need to be aware of. It stands to reason when you indicate what your publication date is going to be, you would write down the first day you anticipate having finished books in hand, right? Wrong!
In the book publishing industry, strategic book reviewers prefer to pass judgement on books before the official publication date. Sometimes complete first printings are sold out prior to their publication dates. Yes you can definitely sell your books before this date. So tack three or four months onto the actual anticipated delivery date, to give reviewers a good chance to supply you with free publicity.
Some other considerations come into play when choosing a publication date. Bear in mind that trade advertising is concentrated during those times of the year when sales forces are making efforts to sell to major publisher lists. That is in January and February, and again in June and July.
Also remember that the time from Labor Day until shortly before the December holidays is rather chaotic, as publishers vie for holiday gift dollars. Advertising and publicity (book reviews especially) go hand in hand. If you can steer clear of these periods, you'll have a better chance of garnering publicity, as there likely won't be as much competition.
Choosing the right publication date for your book is not rocket science. But careful planning and scheduling can be instrumental in the early promotion success of your book.
[This post was created, with permission, from excerpts take from The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing, 5th Edition, co-authored by Marilyn Ross and Sue Collier.]