A Book News Bite

I’ve been busy trying to come up with new ways of marketing my writing. Yesterday, I googled all my local book shops to find out how, as an independent author, I went about getting my books in their shops. Like all aspects of my life, it’s been a case of trial and error.

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I’ve been using Fussy Librarian and Book Cave to help promote my books as these companies are within my price range, and on over 125 sites across Facebook, as well as on LinkedIn, Twitter, Goodreads, Instagram, and of course this blog. The problem is you’re never quite sure whether you’re just stabbing in the dark as I can’t say for sure if I’m hitting my market. The trouble is you have no physical contact with anyone. At the weekend I sold five books while chatting with the readers. I felt a real connection with them and hope they felt the same in return.

Reading is such a personal thing as you lose yourself in the writer’s words. The time invested in reading, an activity which is so time-consuming must be worthwhile for the reader. The writing needs to hook them and keep them turning the pages, but the real difficulty is getting your book into their hands in the first place.

Amazon is fine in as much as it is huge, and gives you the opportunity to sell in other countries without having to post your books to the readers. The trouble is it is so impersonal. To my way of thinking, the more personal contact we have with our audience the more sales we will likely generate, plus you will leave a personal impression on them that they will more than likely start reading your book straight away. All services, whether its banking, hotels, airports etc, all know how important the personal touch is to their customers, and the more positive the experience they have, the more likely they are to return. I know to make my business grow, I need to make contact with my readers.

The reason why all bestselling authors reach their dizzying heights, and have bestselling novels isn’t just because they tell a brilliant story, but also because they are known on a personal level by their audience. Go along to any book festival and you will see it for yourself. Being well-known is the reason why most celebrities take up writing and publishing agencies snap their manuscripts up. They are already familiar household names and faces.

How do you become well-known?

Well, apart from committing a nasty deed and getting your name plastered over the media, you’ll need to build an following. This can be done online by a blog, Facebook, Twitter etc. You’re here now, reading this, so I’m taking it that you have been following my progress for some time. Maybe we already know each other on a personal level, but is it enough for you to buy my books? I hope so.

What else can I do?

Well, I’m planning to meet my audience, and have done so already. At the weekend, my village had a garage sale, so I posted a photo of my books on the village’s Facebook site, and said copies were available at my house. Five lovely readers dropped by to chat and buy my book.

The picture I posted on my village Facebook site

This coming weekend, I shall be on a live chat show called Writers Read with Liza Miles, talking and reading from Seeking the Dark. On Saturday, I shall be taking a copy of my first dark crime novel Stone Angels to a local bookshop. I know, it is so exciting. I can’t quite believe it myself.

How did that come about?

Well, after googling to find out whether there was any bookshops local to me, I then emailed them with details about myself, my books and why I was contacting them. In the evening I received an email back ask me for a copy of Stone Angels On Saturday, I shall be delivering it to the shop.

I shall let you know what happens next.

7 thoughts on “A Book News Bite

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  1. It is good to see you promoting yourself in every way you can imagine. It is hard fact that self-promotion has to be done. I hate it, I spent years promoting my recording artists and know the value of personal contact as well as the more ‘corporate,’ side of PR and it is no easy feat pushing yourself. It feels egotistical and is quite toe-curling at times but it has to be done. I agree with you about getting yo0ur name and face out there. You have to become familiar, someone whose name drips off of the lips of readers and others easily, and from what I know of sales for every 1,000 people you reach, 100 take an interest, and of those 10 may be moved to investigate further, and if you are lucky 1 will buy! It is a numbers game and the more you reach the better chance to sell. If you do your PR right you will have a captive audience and fans for life. Nurture them, feed them and above all respect them and value their loyalty. Think how music fans are with an artists from the beginning, that is not a fluke. Thanks Paula, a fab read, good luck to you and us all. We need it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for dropping by and leaving a comment. Your input is valuable to me. I’m interested in the podcasts you have been doing. I’m finding courage to seek these out and doing them in hope they will help.

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  2. Paula, yes podcasts are a way to go. I would love to do my own and I have got a new mic and that is as far as I have got. What to say, who would be watching or listening etc? I think authors ought to band together to do them as a team and they would each bring their fans and others to new writers. How I have no idea. I need to look at the tech side. I am comfortable with radio and video – although I promoted recording artists (managed them) I also sat in on endless interviews in every type of media around the world, I had to prep them, get them into an acceptable presentation mode and mood. So I know what has to be done and how. It is doing it for me I find hard. I have been lucky in that when I first reached out to internet radio they were happy to allow me air-time. The Authors Show, ChatandSpin, Brian Hammer Jackson, MYVLF (gone now) are all shows authors can apply to and are all free. It is about audience and so you need to be a little larger than life so people won’t tune out. Radio is easier, you can pretend you’re on the phone to someone. Smile as you talk is the secret. I am doing a video live interview next week, see how that goes. I may disappear after! Gone forever down a rabbit hole of shame. We shall see. Do go for something. I will tune in.

    Liked by 1 person

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