Promotion is the often unexpected bug-bear modern writers are faced with. There was a time when publishers shouldered the promotional banner as part of their author-contract. Now, only the authors who are guaranteed to bring in big bucks to the publishers’ coffers may expect such bonuses.
But where does promotion start, and where does it finish? I believe it would be easier to measure a length of string!
But let’s have a stab at it.
To do this we have to stroll into another maze. This one is called Marketing, or Branding. In today’s world image is everything so the first thing to promote is yourself. When readers search for a book to read, unless they know you, they may well skip over your online profile unless it is eye-catching. Study your writing style, genre and content and find a catchy buzz-line that describes your writing. I have chosen The Heart of Romance, so my buzz-line is ‘Sherry Gloag reaches into the heart of romance.’
When you have the answers then you have an ‘identity/Brand’- to promote to your targeted publisher, and your readers. Something you can use on flyers, business cards and other promotional gadgets.
The next question is ‘what does promotion cover’? The short and very unhelpful answer is too quick and easy-- ‘Everything’.
But the reality is nothing of the sort. For new authors, it is a case of creating a website, possibly a blog (or two, or three) and getting yourself ‘out there’.
Sadly not. That’s just the start :-)
Thinking of packing it in before you start? Don’t. It may be incredibly frustrating at times, it may test your new skills, and old ones to the limit, but the rewards are enormous.
The world of publishing has changed beyond recognition in a few short years with the introduction of online publishing, e-books and self-publishing. It continues to change at speeds that can leave you gasping. But, remember those rewards I mentioned earlier?
They are numerous and wonderful. They are the other authors and writers who offer help and encouragement to newcomers, and established authors alike.
The writing community is a wonderful and generous place to be.
The start of every New Year generates new resolutions, goals and dreams.
Follow your heart, and listen to your dreams. If you falter someone will be around to help you forward, give you the advice you are searching for, or point you in the right direction for that elusive piece of information.
So at the start of 2011, know your goals and go for them, tell everyone about them, go after them – and promote them.