Monthly Archives: January 2018

MY BOOK-MARKETING Trials and Tribulations

As an author who is expected to do their own book-marketing (which incidentally I find terrifying), I thought I’d share this blog from my other site http://rcwelsbyauthor.com of a recent attempt of getting publicity for my fiction books.

Half of me thinks it’s rather funny that a woman of advancing years should be hunting for publicity and the other half (the sensible half) cringes. My mission now is to learn everything there is to know to allow me to sell my books. Whatever I learn I will certainly share.

Enjoy!

HOW TO ( NOT) MARKET A BOOK

book-marking booksBOOK-Marketing is probably one of the hardest tasks an Indie writer has to contemplate. Most of us, when we first begin our creative journey of writing, don’t know much about book marketing. I personally found it all rather daunting, and am always very reluctant to sell myself (along with my books). I’ve only just got used to the idea that I can call my self a published author – although “only” a self-published Indie writer. Which now days doesn’t hold the stigma of being second class, compared to the traditionally published author. Even that doesn’t take the task of book-marketing away from authors.

A BOOK-MARKETING NEWBIE

As you can imagine, with thousands and thousands of self-published books, it can be hard to get your own books to sell. At first, all your friends, colleagues and family will rush to download your wonderful creation from Amazon, and they too (if publishing with them) will do their little bit of displaying your book as a newly published for a few weeks. So, everything is stomach churning and exciting until….. the first frenzy of sales start to dry up. Your stomach stops the excited butterflies and replaces them with a hard flat brick of despair!

Glum, or what? This is a reality for many newbie writers. And I’m sure it is a test of endurance – now is the time to fight back and do all things that should have been done prior to the launch of the book. But, it’s never too late.

To give my own book DEATH BY REVENGE  a book-marketing boost, I decided to be brave and attempt to sell the idea of an article to the local Newspaper. Think small, I whispered to myself, its no use going to the Nationals until you can get your name out there. Wrong – there is always a chance a large national paper can pick up your article from a local newspaper.

I took a deep breath and plunged in. Shudder! I got in touch with a wonderfully responsive reporter. Let out the deeply held breath. Yes, they could do an article about a local author. OMG! Forget the stomach-churning, it was now replaced by a hammering heart, as a photographer was sent around to take some photographs.

NEWSPAPER ARTICLES

What should I do? Dress up? Light or heavy make-up? Hair down and curly or up and sophisticated. Will I look fat, will my wrinkles take over my face? Stop! Slow down. People have actually bought my book and enjoyed it, so why shouldn’t I try to increase my sales?

So, long story short, the photographs were taken, everything went well and the publication was scheduled for the Thursday. Ah, I thought, I’ll try my hand at this book-marketing lark again, and let everyone know on my Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin accounts.

“Woohoo, the article will be in the paper on Thursday.” I proclaimed to anybody who listens. Congratulations flooded in.

I bought the paper on Thursday and feverishly scrambled through each page, devouring each article to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Nothing!! My article wasn’t there. The heavy flat brick returned to my stomach.

book-marketing sad

My book-marketing attempt had failed with flying colours. How could I be so stupid? Life as I now knew it would surely be changed forever?

Aw, wait, a reprieve. My article is scheduled for next Thursday. The pounding of my heart is joined with the stomach butterflies as I wait for next Thursday to arrive. (How much chocolate can one nervous author eat?) Do I announce the day to everyone? Or should I keep quiet? oh, the trials and tribulations of an inexperienced book-marketing author.

 

Join me next week when I hope to share this long-awaited newspaper article with you. Also a few snippets of how my book-marketing skills have progressed.

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WRITING A QUICK ROUGH DRAFT

woman writing

WRITING A QUICK ROUGH DRAFT

If It’s the shortest time of completing a first draft you’re after, its best if you make sure you have a goal before you begin, as this will give you an estimate of how many words per hour you will need to achieve in each of your planned writing sessions (although these can become quite flexible once you start).

As the goal is to write as fast as possible, you should set the target as high as is doable. Of course, if you start to find yourself falling short, this is where the flexible bit comes in, as you can go back and tweak the goals, but make sure you keep in mind that the objective of pushing yourself and concentrate on getting as much of your idea down, however loosely at this stage. The sprucing and editing stage comes later.

WRITING AND PLANNING YOUR OUTLINE

Those of you who can plan what you write in advance has an advantage with regards to writing a novel draft quicker. So, it is best if you can start with an outline. Check start writing your book.

When you use an outline the speed of your writing will increase significantly. The more structure and organisation you are able to put into your outline before starting to write, the faster you will finish that first rough summary. The scenes, sequences and chapters once you start writing are already there – no staring at a blank screen wondering where to go next. But, the good thing is, you can always deviate from this first structure as new ideas start to spring into your mind.

WRITING OUT OF CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER

Remember you don’t need to write your story in chronological order, from start to finish. Many writers like to write in blocks – say a chapter or paragraph that is burning inside their brains and then pop it into the story late on. To achieve this, it is easier to use a writing aid, something like SCRIVENER where you can change everything around. For example, you can easily move say, chapter one and make it chapter six. Check it out as see if its something you could use.

If you use Microsoft, you can write your chapters separately and change them around and slot them into position before publishing. The objective is to do everything how you want, and how you feel the most comfortable with.

Work on whatever story sections you feel like working on. You can start by writing the ending, rather than the inciting incident. For some writers, this is much too confusing, but for others, this is a great way to stave off writer’s block at any point of writing the first draft.

writing

A LEARNING CURVE

When writing your first novel you’re on a massive learning curve, which can be both daunting and exciting. If you do start to get overwhelmed, pause, take time out, leave the writing, but don’t stop thinking. When you’re ready to go back and carry on where you left off. Although this article is about writing quickly before you lose interest, this isn’t the best solution for everyone. So, if you learn more easily by taking it slowly – go for it! It’s your book, your story and your method so, do it your way.

Once your first draft is down on paper, (however long it takes) you can now start to shape your story into a novel you want to write.

But, make sure you’re having fun writing.