I have been learning a great deal about writing and about publishing in the past six months. Much of what I have learned from the writing experts is that I have been making lots of mistakes – and to me that’s okay. Albert Einstein would agree, he is quoted with saying “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
For most of us writing and publishing are a learn as you go process - a bit like building the plane as you fly it, I am learning what seems to work and what doesn't. Through my blog, Facebook fan page (& personal page) Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest and Google+ I am trying hard to make connections, grow my circles and really engage with people. For me, as an emerging author, I don't really have a marketing budget, so social media is really my primary strategy, but you can't just spam book promos all day long. Finding Facebook or Google+ groups that fit your target audience is really important and making sure you are interacting regularly. It has to be genuine relationships or it just won’t be effective. You also have the potential to make some new friends along the way.
I have found that doing reviews for other authors is not only a good way to read some great books and help out the writing community, but it is a fantastic way to build relationships so you have a base of folks who will also do reviews for you. I have several positive reviews so far – but of course, I would love to have even more.
Through some of the social media connections that I made, I have been featured on several blogs so far, including an Author interview with Rita Lee Chapman and a Self Published Sunday feature on Novel Notions. I will also be featured on Peace, Love and Writing during Book Madness Week.
I have paid for several promotions, including A Girl and Her Kindle, Ebooksoda, and Goodkindles. I listed my Kindle Direct free day promotions on Reader Giveaways and Pixels of Ink. I am giving two copies of my book away through Goodreads. I actually tried an ad through Facebook (which I don’t recommend – it had very little impact for the money). I found a group of authors through Google+ that are doing a blog tour so I have jumped on board with that, and I am looking forward to learning about that experience as well. With each new connection or promotion I check to see if there has been an impact in my book sales.
As you can tell I am trying lots of avenues to get my book in front of potential readers, and even with all of that work – the return has been limited so far. I am okay with that. I would love to be an instant hit, selling thousands of copies each day, but to be honest, I know this will take lots of time and lots more mistakes along the way. Despite that, I LOVE being able to say I am an author and I love the fact that people are reading my book. Now I just have to get busy writing some more – so I can use the knowledge I have gained for my next book.