Monday, March 14, 2011

After Writing a Novel... A look at Self-Marketing

Dani Kollin, co-author of "The Unincorporated Man," has a livejournal blog that he maintained during the writing process of his book.  His blog inspired me to keep one of my own during my writing process so I can discover and write down all that I need to in order to become successful with or without a publisher.  In the case of Dani Kollin, he submitted his work to a publisher, Tor, and made a success of his writing that way.  However, having a publisher doesn't mean you don't have to do any personal marketing on your own.  Guest blogging on other authors pages is also important.  One example of a guest blogger on Dani Kollin's page is author Kirsten Imani Kasai, link here, who wrote about the anticipation she felt when receiving her first royalty check.

I wrote earlier about Amanda Hockings earning over a million dollars self-publishing her own novels.  She maintains a blog here.  The key to her success seems to be the physical books she submitted to book bloggers (combined with many other things I'm sure).  Here is an excerpt from a news article covering her precipitous rise:


Sure, she talked up her books on her blog, Facebook and Twitter account — but she credits the big burst to submitting her work to book bloggers — many of whom, ironically, don't like reading e-books. She would send them a print copy from her online "print-on-demand" service.
Following the word of mouth generated from 20 to 30 blog reviews, the next month, she sold 4,258 copies, and made $3,180.
So blogs don't like e-books.  Why should they?  They have to spend time reading a novel.  It is really easy for a blogger to get hundreds of free e-books, but a physical novel sends a signal to them that the author is serious.  It may not even matter what type of book it is.  In college I wrote a review for an author who sent in the book "Sex, Lies, and the Bible" to the college newspaper.  My article started a theological war (not because of what the author said but because I wore my Atheism on my sleeve in those days).  Basically, I was sickened that the author could use God to justify all kinds of sexual depravity.  The author got his book noticed.

As I continue to write what I hope to be a great novel I will keep these methods in mind.  Also, continuing to build a following online is probably a must nowadays.  In any case, I will definitely do that.

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