I have a confession to make: I am a marketing neophyte. I have no idea what I’m doing; I’m just making it up as I go along. Sales pitch? What is that? Self-promotion? Somebody hold my hand or better yet, do it for me. I don’t know how to self-promote. I certainly don’t know how to market a book. In fact, my knowledge of marketing could get lost on a pinhead. I am a complete and utter novice here. Okay, end of confession.
You might be wondering why I would make such a confession. Simple. Because this is the position that many authors find themselves in with the publication of their first book, especially if a small press publishes them. While small presses are a wonderful way for an aspiring author to break into the field, they often require the new author to contribute more of their time to their marketing campaign than a larger house might. But if you are a neophyte like me, this can present quite a challenge. How do you market yourself? Where do you start?
I started with the world wide web. The Internet takes the concept of Word of Mouth and amplifies it to ridiculous proportions. It broadens your scope from the tiny patch of earth you call home to the vast landscape of the world. Whenever you post something on the web, be it a blog, Myspace, or even Twitter, your words are traveling into the four corners of the world at the touch of a button. Literally. You are reaching a far greater number of people, in a shorter amount of time, than you possibly could if you took the trip yourself.
The concept is staggering, but the process doesn’t have to be. If you find yourself overwhelmed like I did in the beginning, start out small and expand upon it. Think of it like a stone cast into a pond. The initial contact with water is you and your book; you make this by casting yourself out there via your own blog. The next ripple is you finding a place to contribute a guest post. The next is you finding another place to promote your work and so on, until you have reached out across that pond to touch every possible shore within reach. It is a never-ending process, but it can be a very fulfilling one.
To get you started, I will share with you some of the places I have visited so far, which have proved welcoming of new authors. They are:
The Romance Junkies – http://www.romancejunkies.com/rjblog/
Novel Thoughts and Book Talk – http://novelthoughts.wordpress.com/
Novel Sisterhood – http://novelsisterhood.blogspot.com/
The Bookworm – http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/
Until we meet again, keep writing!
Margay Leah Justice, author of Nora’s Soul, now available on Amazon.com http://margayleahjustice.com