Posted by Lizzie Lamb
As an indie author it’s important for word of my books to get out there. If I don’t go the extra mile to promote my novels, no one else will. So – how do I achieve this I hear you ask?
I achieve this by accepting invitations to appear at book fairs, signings, author talks or library visits. I use these events to create blog posts and promos which I disseminate via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and two retweeting groups I belong to. This could be viewed as casting my bread upon the water in the vain hope that the fish will bite. However, I find that getting my name out there in a variety of ways reaps dividends.
Here are some of my top tips
There are many social media sites and they can be a real time suck, taking you away from your WIP. Experiment to find which ones work for you. I focus on: Facebook (personal, author page, groups) Twitter, Instagram and my website/blog. I also belong to many Facebook ‘groups’, it takes a little time to figure out which ones work get little or no traffic, so don’t be afraid to leave a group if you’re getting nothing from it. LIfe’s too short.
Increase your social media presence
As a result of increasing my social media presence I have been invited to appear in Writers’ Magazine (blog tours – 2018), Writers Forum (my writing space – 2019) De Montfort University to lecture final year creative writing students, library visits, author talks and workshops. One word of warning – book sales are not always guaranteed so do check in advance that you will be paid for the talk, be offered petrol expenses and whether or not the venue will want 10% of your book sales. Yes, really (!)
Get out and about
I believe that my books deserve to be brought to the attention of the largest number of readers possible so I canvass different venues to see if they would like a visit from an indie author, or authors in the case of New Romantics Press. So far, I/we’ve appeared at Aspinalls of London, Waterstones Kensington High Street and hosted literary lunches at top Leicestershire venues to raise money for charity.
Keep your author bio, author photo, links etc up to date. Be organised, you don’t want to be hunting around for an excerpt of your novel when an outside agency approaches you. Invest in a mobile phone capable of taking decent photos and syncs with your computer.
Join author groups where you can learn from others. I’ve been a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association since 2006 and co-organise the Leicester Chapter with June Kearns. What I’ve learned from other authors has been invaluable. I used to belong to local writing groups where members critiqued each other’s work. They didn’t work for me, but they might work for you.
Don’t be afraid to enter competitions, but choose wisely as they can be time suckage, too. Remember to publicise the good bits which you’re happy to share and project a positive image of yourself and your novels.
Once you’re published and have proven sales, join professional groups such as the Society of Authors. It might not do much to raise your profile in the short term but offers invaluable professional advice on contracts, tax matters. Using the #SOA tag on your profile identifies you as a serious writer.
Remember your fellow authors
Make friends, be generous to other writers but don’t expect them to always return the favour. Invite authors on to your blog, ‘like’ any blogs you read and (if time allows) leave a comment. Read and review their books (don’t be afraid to ask them to do the same for you). Retweet authors in your genre, like their posts on Instagram etc. A good time for this is via your mobile phone when you’re watching tv (!) Remember the USA doesn’t come on line until (roughly) 3pm.
Be ready for opportunities
Over the past two years I’ve been offered an Amazon Prime Deal and an Amazon Kindle Deal in India. The former arrived via email when I was in John O’Groats on a research trip and I had to respond straight away. See what I mean about always having your phone with you, always being alert?!
I’m currently waiting to be accepted on the Women’s Institute and Rotaract circuit where I will talk about writing, travels in our caravan, I’ve just signed up to Kindlepreneur and downloaded software to hone my tags and categories more effectively and increase my novels’ visibility on Amazon. The learning never stops.
AND FINALLY . . .
If I’m allowed a small boast (it’s my blog – right?) I’d love to share the article in WRITER’S FORUM where I talk about my writing space. Quite an achievement for an indie author.
So – good luck with all your enterprises. Don’t wait for luck to strike, go out and make it happen. And, if you see me on social media, do ‘like’ and ‘share’ my posts – I always pay it forward.
Slainte Mhath –
Posted in Lizzie's Scribbles
Tags: Adrienne Vaughan, Carole Matthews, Cathy Bramley, De Montfort University, Jilly Cooper, Kate Hardy, Kindlepreneur, Lizzie Lamb author, Melinda Hammonds, Narbeth Book Fair, Romantic Novelists' Association, Rosie Hendry, social media presence, Society of Authors, Sue Moorcroft, time suckage, Writer's Forum, Writers' Magazine
Posted by Lizzie Lamb
This week, June Kearns and I travelled to London for Trisha Ashley‘s book launch at Daunt’s, Marylebone High Street. Our plan was to spend the day window shopping, have lunch and then head for Daunt’s – all part of my birthday celebration. An unexpected guest turned up at Daunt’s and really provided the icing on the (birthday) cake . . . as you will see, if you read on.
I love London and luckily, there is a direct line from Leicester to St Pancras. The whole London vibe really inspires me as a writer. The first time I bought a Diptych candle I was in Notting Hill researching my debut novel, Tall Dark and Kilted. June very kindly bought me a tuberose candle in the Marylebone High Street shop as a birthday present. I will be burning it in my study as I get on with book #5.
Marylebone High Street has lots of niche shops and cafes and June and I plan a return visit later this spring with friends. In one of the pubs, I visited the ladies’ loo and the cubicles were decorated with reclining nudes – there was a purple velvet chaise longue to languish on, should the mood take you. Recline and Sprawl ?
We eventually remembered that we weren’t there to enjoy ourselves (hah!), we were there to attend Trisha’s book launch and meet fellow writers and readers. So we got down to it.
We hoped we might meet fellow Romantic Novelists’ Association members at the launch and we weren’t disappointed. I was especially thrilled to ‘bump into’ Kate Hardy who is on the short list for a Rona Rose award on Monday with: Billionaire, Boss … Bridegroom? In 2012, Kate dedicated her book : The Ex Who Hired Her to my naughty parrot Jasper, and me (he appears on page 6).
Here is a slideshow of other RNA friends who rocked up at Trisha’s book launch –
I’ve been a Doctor Who fan ever since I watched the first episode back in nineteen sixty – something. So, the unexpected appearance of Peter Davison at Trisha’s book launch really was the icing on the cake and topped off my Birthday Bash in London. He was charming and agreed to pose with some of his fangirls. Not every day a girl meets a Time Lord, is it?
The Five(ish) Doctors, reboot – video BBC.co.uk
To sum up – it was so good to kick back, chill, and every other adjective I can think of because (drum roll) my new novel has been returned from fabulous proofreader, Julia Gibbs and is now in the capable hands of Sarah Houldcroft being formatted. And breathe.
Pre-order date coming soon