Those Who Know say the best way to keep your work in front of readers is to write another book. As I’m in the middle of letting everybody know about (let’s be honest, marketing) my new book and trying to reach as many potential readers as possible, I’ve snatched a few minutes out to think about this.
At the risk of repeating many other people, you need a damn’ fine, well-formatted and produced book that has a great cover, is tightly edited and contains a story bursting with page-turning quality. If it doesn’t meet all these criteria, don’t go a step further. Get your offering into top shape first.
You cannot just publish a book and hope people will ‘discover’ it, especially if you are self or indie published, so you have to set aside marketing and PR (collectively known as ‘promo’) time from your writing time.
You need to enlist your friends and colleagues of all kinds to help spread the word – you cannot do it all alone. Additionally, you need to develop a firm online base of friends, fan and followers by talking and engaging with people, preferably about books. But what else would you talk about as a writer?
The best publicity is word of mouth, third party endorsement/ an authoritative book review (several preferably!) and you won’t get these by sitting in your bat-cave all day, tapping on the keyboard, turning out your next masterwork.
So you find yourself caught in a self-perpetuating circle of writing and promo conflict. The solution? Be absolutely grim in your determination to write even a couple of pages in your current work every day, whatever the urgent needs of promo. A blogpost doesn’t count – sorry.
Look at the counter at the top left of this page.* That’s how close I am to publication of PERFIDITAS and it’s desperately difficult to resist doing a few tweets or FB posts. But my fingertip is heading for the ‘Publish’ button now, then I’m gone, writing.
* Editor’s note: Deactivated: showed 4 days to go to publication when this article was posted