publicity for authors

A lot is being said in the Twitterverse about the subject of writer publicity and promotion. How to build an author platform, how to promote your book, blah, blah, blah.

For one, I find it terribly annoying to be constantly peppered with requests from people to become a fan of their unpublished selves, or their unpublished novels on Facebook. I find it equally annoying to follow an author’s blog or twitter account or whatever when all they do is promote their own material.

Promotion is not as cheap as all that.

If you want people to follow your blog, you should make interesting posts. The subject is not terribly relevant, but it can’t be constantly about new books you have coming out, or, even more annoying, raving reviews your work has received.

A blog offers your readers (whether you’re published or not) an insight into whatever aspect of your life you choose to share. This could be writing technicalities, as done by Ilona Andrews. It could be tv, movies and aspects of society (or your cats) as done in the very entertaining blog of John Scalzi. There are excellent blogs by writers as yet unpublished, such as the services and quizzes for writers by John Gibbs.

The point is, if you want people to follow you in the blogosphere, you have to give them content. Advertising is not content.

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9 comments on “publicity for authors

  1. Patty, you are so right: “Advertising is not content.” Promotion is really important, especially for new writers finding success, but it shouldn’t be at the exclusion of everything else. The last thing I want to read is a blog full of “look at me, look at me.”

    • Even published authors do this. Sometimes you’ll see a blog where the only posts concern where the author has sold what book in what translation, and where raving reviews of the author’s work have been published. Often, they’ll even copy the review. Sorry, but *barf*

  2. I know what you mean, but what can you do? When you have a book coming out, it becomes a huge part of your life. I have tried to keep a lot of promo off my blog by starting up an entirely new blog for the book. Even to me this seem excessive, but I have to write about what my current interests are and, if I the book didn’t have its own blog, all that stuff would be in my main blog too!

    • writing about your interests is totally different. Writing about your book on your blog when the book comes out… well… people would be surprised if you didn’t, but spamming everyone to please become a fan of you on Facebook? Urgh!

  3. I’ve seen Twitter accounts where every tweet is “My new book X is available here” and every reply is “@victim Have you seen my new book X?”

    They wonder why I don’t follow them back.

    There’s being excited about your release, and there’s being a spammer. When I tweet a funny story about my snail, I only want a plug for your book if it’s a funny story about a snail.

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