There’s no getting away from it. If you write and publish, you’re competing with hundreds of thousands of other writers and millions of books. Advice, good and bad, comes at you from all sides, and it’s almost impossible to distinguish the good from the bad. Or at least the useful from the useless. To make things worse, the sands are always shifting under your feet and what worked yesterday is a waste of time (and money) today.
What makes the most sense for me when it comes to self-promotion is to know what I am and am not willing to do to promote my books. How much time I’m willing to put into it. (Not very much.) How much money I’m willing to spend. (For promotion? Not even a penny.)
It also makes sense to read as widely as possible, to pay attention to the most successful writers when they tell us what works for them, and then ignore what doesn’t fit our own situation.
Every little bit of knowledge helps, so consider this my way of adding to your knowledge. And remember that everything you read needs to be taken with a grain of salt and with your own needs and preferences in mind.
1. David Gaughran has made Let’s Get Visible available for $.99 through Friday. It concentrates on using Amazon to its best advantage and offers a ton of information that you probably didn’t know about Amazon’s algorithms, best seller lists, etc.
2. Write, Publish, Repeat: The No-Luck-Required Guide to Self-Publishing Success by Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant. This is a very chatty book with a lot of material that’s more entertaining than useful, but it does have a solid core of “how-to” that anyone can use.
3. “The Writer’s Guide to Building an Email List” from Your Writer Platform blog. The more I read about mail lists, the more I’m convinced that they’re an important method for increasing your readership. But only if they’re done right and are part of a sensible promotion strategy.
4. More on setting up a mail list, specifically with Mailchimp, courtesy of a Kboards member. A Total Newbie’s Guide to Getting Started with Mailchimp.
5. Mystery writer Louisa Locke explains the importance of using Amazon’s search bar. Lots of stuff I had no idea about, since my main interest in the search bar has been as a reader. “How to Sell Books in the Kindle Store with the Search Bar.”
6. Finally, if you’ve been wondering whether it’s worth it to blog and want to know how best to do it as a part of your author’s platform, Your Writer Platform comes to the rescue again. This time, with “5 Steps to Blogging Mastery for Fiction Writers.”