Making Your Presence Known

I will say that one of the most difficult things to do as an author is get someone to read the darn book! You've sweated over the prose. Polished the story, sent it off to beta readers and writing groups. You ripped it apart, rewrote it and then sent it off to a bevy of publishers and agents just to watch them toss it up in the air and use it for skeet shooting. After weathering the trials of rejection, resubmit and rejection again you've finally found a publisher. Someone is going to take your baby and do right by him. You get your cover and show the picture to everyone. Your kid gets irritated because your cover takes over her spot in your wallet for a while. You meet your editor and you go a round a three with them poring over every last word. Finally, though, finally, you get to hold that word baby in your hands and it's a wonderful feeling. Mostly because the gestation and labor on a book can be years. Makes that 30-something weeks for a kid a snap.

You think your journey's over. You think that you can now concentrate on getting your next book baby out there. Huh. Yeah. No. Sorry. You forgot one little detail. It's that little devil called MARKETING and BRANDING. If you were lucky enough that your book baby found a home with one of the dinosaurs of the publishing world, one of the big five (I think they're down to five now) you might actually get someone who makes sure your book finds its way onto actual book store shelves and gets an ad or two on the internet. No matter. The best person to hawk that book is you and it's a daunting task.

Where do you start? How do you start? I admit, I am no marketing guru, but I have learned a few lessons over the last few years. One lesson I learned is that Twitter is a fabulous tool and I stink at it. Some people are great at using Twitter and they have thousands of followers and get dozens of favorites and retweets. Unfortunately, that's not me. However, building an internet presence is key. When someone at a convention picks up your card (places like Vistaprint have business cards very reasonably priced) you want them to be able to find you. So, a Twitter account, a facebook fan page, a blog, a website and an Amazon central author page. Whew! I know. It sounds intimidating and it is, but it doesn't need to all appear overnight. I suggest that you choose one a month and build your presence. I started with a FB page, then my blog, Twitter, Author Central and then a website. The website's so new I still forget about it!

Next time, I'll get into the whole convention circuit. If you've never been to a Con, I'll need to explain a little bit. If you'd like to check out my internet presence, here you go....

Twitter: @rlfrencl


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