I know I’m supposed to write every day, and when someone asks me how to write a book I usually give them the lame answer that you just sit down and write. The truth is, it doesn’t always come naturally. There are days my muse is whispering sweet somethings in the ear of another. Even if it doesn’t happen, that doesn’t mean I stop working. I take advantage of that down time to do a lot of marketing.
95% + 95%
Writing should be about 95% of what a writer does, it should always be warm and sunny for my birthday, snow should melt the day after Christmas, people should stop tailgating…. You get the idea. Being an indie writer means that the other 95% of my time is also spent marketing, brainstorming, and making every grassroots effort I can plant to find my audience and keep them around.
A Little Every Day
In addition to my daily writing session which I never miss ever ever, except for maybe yesterday, I do something to promote my books. Whether it’s finding my audience on Twitter, writing a blog post, looking for new venues to promote through, or planning for a con – here are some recent examples on my to do list.
A New Prop For Cons
When I wasn’t writing last weekend, I worked on a prop of Chryslaenor, a giant sword from the Angst series of fantasy novels. The current one is a little beat up, and I’ve gotten teased enough about my ‘surfboard’ and ‘pizza flipper’ to change up the design a little. People love stopping by the booth to take pictures with it, and sometimes they stick around to buy books!
I started a newsletter to let readers know when my books are on sale, or when the next one will be released. It will be more informative than spammy since I’ll only be sending it out if I have relevant news.
Paying for Ads
Finally, I’ve also been testing the waters with advertising through various newsletters and ebook websites. Nothing too crazy, but I’ve been wondering about other ways of finding readers without bribing Oprah or running a full page ad in the New York Times. (I offered the Times $5.00 and they said no! Where’s the love?)
A Lot of Marketing
The time I have to spend as an indie writer isn’t always spent writing, even if it’s supposed to be. I do believe the best way to build and keep an audience is to write a lot of books, but between the day job, family, and naps – when writing just isn’t going to happen, I feel that time promoting Angst every day is time well spent.