When White Ginger was released, just four months ago, I had no idea of the amount of promotion required of me as ‘the author’. White Ginger is the first book I wrote, and it was picked up by a publisher. I hadn’t ‘been around’ other authors very long, had never really read blogs about books and writing, and certainly never used the internet to ‘find’ books to read and authors to follow.
That’s what book club is for, right? And my library.
Quite naively, I expected more input to promoting my novel from my publisher. I literally had no concept that they weren’t interested in this aspect and, in fact, expected me to do all of my own. After all, they liked my book enough to offer me a contract for it, to see it through its edits, to create a very hot cover (although it is actually a ‘sweet’ romance) so they would be my partner through the promotion stage, wouldn’t they?
Several months in, and with the joys of having befriended a number of wonderful writers, sharing their releases, seeing all the work they put in to social media to promote their work and having ‘shared’ much for them too, I now understand that most of getting my little story out there is up to me.
I’ve bumbled my way through creating an author page on Facebook, stuffed up posts and pictures and likes (and probably many other things) along the way, and finally got the idea that I have to stay regular (NB – eat more bran! – NO, not that sort of regular!). I’m not too bad at Facebook, but it’s a challenge running two different personas – me, and my writerly self. Sometimes, I forget which is the real person!
My daughter set up a twitter account (I still barely know how to twitter/tweet – LOL) which I venture onto on Sundays. I still haven’t come to terms with how to use this medium to good effect but I at least attempt to use it.
However, my favourite social medium is Pinterest. I love it! I can pin while pretending to watch boxing with my husband – it’s far superior to chunky, sweaty bodies and bloodied faces – and add fabulous visual stimuli to my ‘novel’ boards. Pinterest feeds my love of beautiful people and places and shoes and food and Romance and… You get the picture.
A good friend and fabulous author, Annie Seaton, recently published “Promotional Tips and Tricks for Aspiring Authors in the Digital Landscape”. I truly wish this book had been available before I was published. I would have had more idea of what I should have been doing to let readers know about me and my book.
But it’s not too late to learn. I’ll definitely do better next time.
And in the meantime, here’s my Pinterest link if you’d like to see some of what inspired White Ginger and what is to come, including my first short story, One Night in Sorrento. Hey, I think I just did some advance promo!