Monday, August 25, 2008

Writers: Move Into the Digital Age

How many writers finally sell a manuscript, then spend the next year writing the next book while working on edits on the first, then when the book comes out, they think, “Okay, now what? How do I sell this book?”

Hint: If you wait ‘til then, it’s too late.

But you’re so busy between the selling and the publishing time, you can’t think of much else. How do you squeeze out time to visit other blogs and post comments? Who can take thirty minutes over the course of a day to tweet on Twitter? Create and maintain a Face Book page, a MySpace space? Build a fabulous website with Reader Guidelines and a YouTube book trailer? Join GoodReads, befriend others, join discussion groups there? Sign up for various ListServs, read and post comments? Start your own blog and blog every day?

Aaakkk! It’s impossible. And yet…if you’re a savvy author, you try to do just that – or at least most of it. Because whether you’re with a small press or a major house, you’re going to have to do a great deal, if not all, of your own marketing.

So, there are three keys:
Start Early
Pick and Choose
Keep Track
Start Early: Don’t wait until you’re published. Don’t even wait until you’ve sold the manuscript. Start now building up your presence on the Internet.

Pick and Choose: You can’t do everything. You just can’t. There are too many roads on the Cyber Highway and not all of them will lead you where you want to be.

Keep Track: Things have to be updated and some blogs/sites/resources will give you more bang for your buck. But if you don’t maintain records of user names, passwords, dates of last update, blogs you think would be good to be on during your blog book tour, etc., how will all this work pay off in the end?

To get you started, here’s an article to read. It’s geared toward publishers but is important for authors to read. So, give it a read, then tell me your thoughts.


  1. Good post, and very inf-packed good article. I saved the url so I can really DIGG into it later today and not just be a passing GAWKER at it - lol

  2. I agree Marvin. I thought the article was very interesting and held a lot of info for writers.

  3. Good article link and your post was succinct and oh so right!

    Picking and choosing is the hardest part since you meet different people you want to connect with and five out of five have different preferences for THEIR social networking... I do know I hate Facebook and the damnable 'your friend has bitten you with a vampire' crapola...

  4. Once I accepted that I couldn't do it all, I was better able to focus my energy. Now I have my promotion spreadsheet and I spend time on the efforts that I know pay off.

  5. Dana,
    I don't have a FaceBook page, so I have no idea what it means to get bitten by a vampire, but I seriously doubt it's a good thing. I assume someone is trying to suck the life out of you?

  6. LJ, your spreadsheet idea is such a great one.

    If anyone missed LJ's post on this, you can find it at:

  7. I loved the article --especially the idea about putting out on the blog that the author would tour any city that would promise a crowd. Such a simple but wonderful idea. Still I am puzzled about how twitter would help me locate the cities people who might buy my book are in.

  8. I don't know how you find these great articles.

    Also, I do have a list of passwords. Somehow the one I need never seems to get on there!

    Morgan Mandel


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