Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Marketing advice for fiction writers

The following advice is not from your's truly, but is a list compiled by publisher, editor, graphic designer and writer crystalwizard of Abandoned Towers Magazine. So, very little of what you read below comes from me (though I did add a suggestion or two which crystalwizard has incorporated). If you have more ideas for writers wanting to market their work, check out this thread at the forums and feel free to add your suggestions. Another thing to keep in mind, all of these ideas are for free ways to market writing. Enjoy!

There are many ways to market that don't cost you anything but time and effort.

1. Are you on Twitter? Get there and start tweeting little bits of tantalizing information about the book.Invite everyone you know to follow you on twitter, put up a follow me link to your twitter profile on your webpage or blog.
2. Do you have a blog? You'd better and you'd better update it frequently.
3. Do you have a website? If not, Weebly has great,websites for free. Go here: set one up and update it on a regular basis. Focus on the book at least for a while.
4. Do you have short stories and articles out there published by different e-zines? Get to work and make that happen.
5. Do you have a facebook and myspace page, and a lot of people in your friends list? Get those and populate the friends lists with everyone you can that are already on those sites. Search the membership for various keywords that match your book and then invite everyone that shows up in the searches.
6. Have you contacted blogtalk radio and gotten interviews set up? Do so.
7. Have you gone through all the various internet radio stations, found the ones that are appropriate to your book and contacted them for interviews? Do so.
8. Have you contacted your local media and set up interviews? You need to.
9. Have you contacted every bookstore you can think of in your local area (within an hour or 2 driving distance) and set up signings? Do that immediately.
10. Have you contacted orginzations such as the rotary club, lion's clubs, school groups and so on that are appropriate for your book and arranged to give talks (with the agreement you can sell copies of your book after the talk)? Do that as well.
11. Youtube. Good book trailers that are professionally produced, or at least look professionally produced, are extremely important to put up on youtube.
12. Contact webzines that fit the book and see if they would be willing to run an interview or an excerpt from the book in exchange for some advertising on your website or blog.
13. Exchange banners with websites that match what the book's about.
14. For authors with American publishers who are living overseas, the US embassy is a great place to make contacts. They generally work truly hard to promote local authors (the cultural side of the embassies is very active).
15. There are usually associatons in every community which promote the cultural side of life. Contact them and set up events.
16. Contact your local set up a talk and/or reading. You can't usually sell your book there, but people who come will appreciate that you came and will often go out and buy the book.And make sure your library has a copy. Give them a free copy of the book. Don't underestimate the power of libraries. Librarians talk to each other and will tell other librarians about your book, which will encourage other libraries to buy the book, which generates a lot of sales. There are THOUSANDS of libraries in California alone. That's a lot of potential sales.
17. Contact local colleges and universities.Most colleges of any size will have tons of differnt groups and/or classes that would be interested in having a writer visit or speak.
18. Contact various student groups, from beginning writers to speaking organizations to the local role-playing gamers' group, that might be interested.
19. Speak with creative writing professors at local colleges and universities, as well as adult education programs, about visiting their class and discussing your experiences.
20. If you're an alumni, contact your various alumni organizations; see about speaking at a conference and before to mention you have a new book.or story about to be published. Request to have it listed in their alumni literature or on the websites.

For authors with book in English who are living in non-English speaking countries:
1. Seek out chain bookstores that specialize in English-language literature. For example, Argentina has a chain called KEL, which is English Only and has five or six outlets. Provide contact information to your publisher if they won't speak to the author.
2. School libraries are deinitely a great place to sell books as long as the book is clean and wholesome enough that no one will ever objecct to their presence.

Think of the image you're trying to create about the book and the author. That will help guide your media efforts, especially with your website and blog. Everything you do should tie together.There are hundreds more things you can do. How many of the above have you already done?

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