Holidays are special for most of us. They became even more so for me when they didn't exist.
I lived in China for seven years. I learned quickly just how different the Asian culture is from my own, where the traditional Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, so very important in our American culture, were basically ignored. It wasn't their holiday, and so if we wanted to celebrate, my husband and I had to create our own excitement, anticipation and ambiance.
It took a lot of work to make something out of nothing. But because of that applied effort in the early years of my marriage, it has always made me love these two holidays even more.
As a writer, you should love them as well. They are tremendous publishing opportunities.
Holidays are a wonderful marketing vehicle. It almost doesn't matter what your topic, if you are creative you can find a way to make it work.
Who remembers the very first "Die Hard" movie with Bruce Willis? It was about terrorists that take over lead character, John McClane's (Willis) wife's office building....on Christmas Eve. Because of that one twist in the story line, it opened the door for the movie to be released at Christmas.
Seriously? Christmas time as the backdrop for a movie full of blood, guts and killing? And it went blockbuster. The producers recognizing that Christmas is a high traffic movie-going season, simply worked a Christmas tree and theme into the story line...and it worked. Big time.
So where is your expertise? What are the topics you can write about? How can you make that work as a holiday-themed article or manuscript? There are so many directions to go. Whether your topic is money, emotions, family, food, faith, etc. You can craft something to highlight your topic or material.
"Four Secrets to a Forever Marriage" which I helped write with Michael Letney and which was published this past summer, is one such example. It's been out three to four months and so it's time for a boost. Topics I'm toying with are "How to Have Happy Holidays If Trust has been Broken," "Keeping Your Marriage Strong Through Holiday Stress," "The Most Important Gift you Can Give Your Marriage this Holiday." These are not final titles---just topics.
So what are topics you write about that you can weave around the holiday theme to get you some free press or a reboost for a previously published book that you can link to?
You need to start now. It's far too late for print rags, but e-zines and papers, you still have plenty of time to query, write and submit if you get after it.
So what are you waiting for? Make this year's holiday one of literary happiness as you find a hook for your book or expertise by incorporating a holiday theme.