It’s Blog Chain time again. This time, Heather started us off with a change of pace. Her question had to do with the business aspects of our jobs:
What plans do YOU have to market your novel? How will you make sure the public finds your work?
I am one of the odd-balls amongst my writer friends that actually likes marketing. I have given a lot of thought to this topic of late, allowing my mind to fantasize about the actual publication of my book. In my twenties, marketing was a common part of my job (I worked both in direct sales and as a buyer). Many of those same skills would apply to the marketing of a book.
“You are in three businesses: the book business, the marketing business, and the people business” – Michael Larsen (from Get Known Before the Book Deal).
This quote from Michael Larsen sums up my approach to being a fiction author. Let’s take each section as it applies to Heather’s question.
Obviously, everything has to start with a GREAT BOOK. Towards this end, I am spending more and more time learning the craft of writing and perfecting it as best I can. But that is a topic for another time. Let’s look at the other two parts of our business as they relate to the question…
Marketing and People.
Last week I posted on the need for building a platform long before the book deal comes about. This deals with the people aspect of our business. A key part of my marketing strategy revolves around building readership. My plan is like a lot of others who have already answered this:
- Use the internet (though blogs, interviews, contests, websites and teaching opportunities) to establish and build readership.
- Additionally, I think face-to-face contact is vital. I plan on using this method to build readership as well. Specifically I am looking at speaking engagements on topics related to my stories, workshops, and attending conferences (both related to writing and to subjects in my books). I currently conduct several workshops related to anxiety and fear in teens – a major theme in my stories. I have drafted proposals to present at a couple of major conventions on the topic of emotional intensity, another theme related to my storylines. Finally, I have just drafted proposals for workshop for teens about writing in my local community. This can build readership as well.
These ideas all relate to building platform. The people part of the business.
A few miscellaneous ideas to help with promoting the book once it is published:
- Cross promotions – several other blog chainers have talked about cross promos – – – this has a lot of potential to it. I am into music, so I am more inclined to find musical cross promotions.
- Interviews and giveaways (kind of a no-duh…but they DO work)
- Continuation of the activities related to building a platform.
I guess that is enough to get things started. I want to end with one of my favorite quotes from Christina Katz’ book Get Known Before the Book Deal:
“The steps you need to go from totally unknown writer to successful author are:
Produce quality writing
Build a platform
Grow your platform
Write your book proposal (or query, pitch, etc)
Write the book (or revise and make it THE BEST you can)
Promote your book
Repeat (I love this one!!!)”
PS – So I completely forgot to add my book trailer….here it is: