You've put your heart and soul into a book and it's finally completed. You've sent it off to a publisher who has accepted it. Or perhaps you've self-published and it's now available. What's next? After the celebration comes the "morning after" when you realize you need to promote your book. People aren't going to buy it if they don't know about it. So you need to spend a lot of time talking it up – literally and figuratively.
Other than your family and close friends, who is going to hear about your book? You will announce this news on Twitter and facebook, on your blog and everywhere else. You're going to buy bookmarks and postcards and maybe buy ad space in a magazine. But then what?
This is when it really helps to have a network of fellow authors. Once you reach out, hopefully they will pass on your good news to their friends and family, and if they like your book they'll pass the word on, too.
So how do you find these networks? One of them is right here at GRRWG. Make sure we know about your successes so that we can share. When you let us know about your accomplishments, we'll pass the news on, here and on facebook.
This summer I joined two other groups that are dedicated to helping you get the word out about your work. One is called Authors Helping Authors. It's a great group of authors headed by Alicia Dean. There's a database where you enter you book titles, buy links, and a suggested tweet for each of your books. And then each day an email is sent out with three to four suggested tweets, which you then send out to your followers. If everyone in the group (right now there are 71 members) sends out your book information to their followers, imagine the number of people who will learn about it!
The second group I joined is Marketing for Romance Writers. This is more of a place to learn about trends in self-marketing. Members share their publishing news, but more than that we share what works for us. During a recent three day "Marketing Camp" I learned so much about various online tools available to me. They recently sponsored a Pitch Day where various publishers were on hand to "listen" to pitches, and in the days before that there were mini classes on the best way to present out books.
I know there are lots of other author groups out there, but these are two I've found helpful. Both groups can by found by going to groups.yahoo.com and doing a search for them. It takes time to go through all the emails, but I've found the benefits have been worth it. By reaching out, I've made lots of new virtual friends, and find out about what's out there. Marketing is a lot of work, but it's something you have to do to sell.
Oh, and you also need to get going on your next book so that you can do this all over again.