Tuesday, December 18, 2012
With Age, Comes Wisdom?
I wish that I could say that I knew more about publishing than I did, say, two years ago but I'm not sure that's true. The landscape constantly changes. Abandon it for a few months to hammer out your next book and the next new shiny gizmo or news might pass you by.
Sure, at some point you master the art of querying, finding an agent, and finding the right editor. Oh, and there's the pesky detail of writing the damn book. But, once your book is sold, I've found that the real work begins.
Like promoting your book.
Book promotion doesn't mean blabbing about your upcoming release 24/7 on Twitter and Facebook and driving people basically crazy with constant advertisement drivel. In fact, I've learned that book promotion isn't really about your book at all. It's about you.
Building your "brand" and finding your audience is very critical. The good news is that for any writer, regardless of how you decide to publish, branding work can begin long before you publish your book. The more genuine and authentic you can be, the more rewards you may be able to reap when you need them most.
For example, don't look at the people you meet in various social media outlets as "followers." Gawd, please don't. Don't be obsessed with amassing followers like you're the leader of some kind of weird cult. Remember that the people you meet and interact with on Facebook, Twitter, at conferences, in book stores, at book clubs have names and faces--they are all readers, mothers, sisters, teens, librarians, writers, bloggers, neighbors, fathers. In short, these people may become your professional contacts, confidants and, yes, some may even become your friends. Building your brand and audience can be as slow as simmering chili in a slow cooker but, depending on your outlook, it can be rewarding and sometimes, dare I say it, fun.
I know. Easier said then done. Hey, I might cross-stitch that one!
And don't forget to keep writing your next book.