Monday, 20 July 2015

What can you say apart from please buy my book? Pt 1

Time and tide...get your feet wet.
We're told that everyone has a book inside them* although many would-be writers are unable to commit themselves to the page. Who can blame them? It's hard work and when you finally reach 'the end' another adventure beckons. Then, when you've finally reached the final 'the end', it's the joy of submission. And then, finally, finally, your book is out there. (Please note: the whole process can take years, or lifetimes.)

Then rainbows follow you and royalty receipts are strewn at your feet by welcoming angels.

Well, not exactly. Now you have to switch off the artist side of your brain and think about marketing. Whether you're self-published or traditionally published, you will need to play your part. Most writers I've spoken to on the subject are not natural marketeers. 

When it comes to promotional activity, they go through the author's give stages of promotional grief. If you'd care to follow me...

DENIAL - I don't have to promote my book. That's what agents, publishers, angels and my social media contacts are for. I just write the books. It can still sell if I don't promote it.

ANGER - Why isn't my bloody book selling? It's not fair. I bet JK didn't have to deal with this.

BARGAINING - If I just do a little, surely that will be enough? If I ask all my friends, and everyone in my writing group, and anyone I've ever met online, won't that do? 

DEPRESSION - This book is never going to sell. I can't do it. It's too hard. (And even the classic: I'm not a good enough writer and people will see that.)

ACCEPTANCE - This is the book I've written. I want to reach readers. My literary child may not be the prettiest or the smartest or the most erudite but goddarn it I'm gonna love it all the same. I wrote it and now it's depending on me. Where's my pen?

The solution is writing about your book without simply creating a page with a sales URL. Do make sure you include one of those with every promotional post though. Art for art's sake; money for food.

On Friday I'll give you some suggestions. See you then.

* Not like Manny in Black Books.

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