And, of course, I am not the only one interested in Building a Platform. Most of you who are authors or are working toward being published are interested in this topic, since it’s vital to your career as a writer. I know some of you are feeling like I am - overwhelmed at the idea.
Not long ago, The Philadelphia Inquirer had an article devoted to this very topic and it focused on some of the authors at The Free Library of Philadelphia’s book festival…like Jim Zervanos who is underwriting his own pretty much physical (as opposed to virtual) tour. Over 11 months, he’s gone to conferences, book festivals, and writer’s workshops (including paying to have an exhibitor’s table). He’s spent $10,000. He’s not a writer with a big publisher, but one with a “tiny” publisher. He’s out there working and trying to sell his book.
Although the publishers will tell you that marketing your book is a co-op between you and the publisher, the truth is that more and more the author must do the heavy lifting and pushing. Ben Laurro, founder of Pure Publicity, says that authors have to find new methods to market their books because book stores and libraries won’t get you where you want to be.
"Facebook and Twitter have become powerful avenues to reach readers," he says. "The media wasn't the same as it was even two years ago . . . [and authors] need to realize that we need to reinvent the wheel."Jonathan Maberry, author of The Dragon Factory said:
"It's such a large part of the marketing plan. It's huge. . . . You can't really get anything done in publishing without social media."He and some other writers created a Philly-based literary collective where they meet to discuss the publishing industry and have worked together on projects that help local causes (and at the same time, get their names out to the public and give them a platform for speaking engagements).
It’s an interesting article, so click over and read it if you have time. Before you go, I’m wondering if any of you have become part of or created a coalition of authors to discuss the industry and strategize on ways to work together to promote your books. I have groups of writer friends that I socialize with, but we don’t discuss writing. I think it would be interesting to have a “business” group of writer friends. Do you have one?