As I continue to figure out new ways to reach new people in order to generate interest in my publication, a few things manage to stump or amuse me.
This, for example, is what I found at my Smashwords account by clicking the word COUPON.
This page allows you to assign coupon codes to books which you can then share with prospective customers on your fan email lists, your blog or website, your social networks, or in your press releases and other promotions.
Interesting. Fan e-mail lists. Not even just one, but plural for heaven’s sake. Seriously? People actually have these at their disposal? How damn skippy for them is that?!
My e-mail list has my son and daughter on it, and my sister’s work address for when she sends me a random email every few months or so.
Next, the words PRESS RELEASES. This makes me think famous people, which isn’t me, so this COUPON thing obviously doesn’t apply, either.
Now, I’ve linked to, liked, and follow dozens of fellow writers online. I’ve created my blog (here), a Twitter account, a Facebook page, and a few lesser places that are designed to get me noticed. I still don’t have anyone’s e-mail or permission to access their e-mail. I have 2 friends at Facebook and 38 followers at Twitter. I think 101 people are following me here at WP.
I’ve book-marked and liked/follow all of the Romance Writer/Reader websites I could find and that seem to be relevant and update regularly. And, that WP Promotion thing, that I ignore now because every time I say sure, go ahead and Promote this, it takes me to my ‘account’ and shows me all these other people getting hundreds of likes and fans and wows and stuff while I remain a zero everything. Zero likes. Zero shares. Zero Zen Cash made, etc.
Probably because I can’t afford to upgrade, right?
My name is out there, though. I’m trying to get noticed.
Facebook has dozens of legitimate Groups you need permission to join before following rigid but understandable guidelines all meant to help me, the author, get my work noticed by fellow writers of the Indie variety (or otherwise).
I’ve done this. I’ve even gone so far as to re-write my About at Twitter in order to gain a bigger audience. I’ve also made sure to include an apology for the unimpressive cover I created using a stock photo and Paint. I ask potential readers to ignore the cover and give my writing a chance before judging its worth.
Amazon terrifies me even if they keep inviting me to upload my manuscript using their ‘free and easy publishing tool’ to get started. The Smashwords site had me check off every conceivable app before I uploaded, and I’m pretty sure it included Amazon’s Kindle, but I could be wrong.
It doesn’t matter when nothing is happening anywhere, with any of the apps, or at any of these Groups I submitted my work to for input.
Everyone LIKES my push-posts but no one ever says or does anything about them.
Two years ago I did the same thing at my blogger site and uploaded an entire manuscript there (for free) and at a website meant to help potential authors garner above-mentioned audience, followers, fans. Over 9,000 hits in less than three months occurred. NINE thousand. Not one, single remark, comment, like, dislike from any of them.
And, yes, the statistics showed how a vast majority of that 9,000+ didn’t stick around but some did, and a few for the duration, too. It was from those few I would have appreciated a little input, comment, encouragement, or advice.
Again, it would seem I am my own worst enemy. I want what I can’t have. I’m trying to break down a solid barrier between me and people with the income to succeed in this market. Does my writing really suck? Am I honestly spinning my wheels here hoping to accomplish something that – like everything else I’ve ever tried – is another huge fail?
What I’m not good at, I think, is being a people person. I don’t know how to really connect with them, make lasting relationships that actually have potential for growth, or even how to create freaking hash tags (I still call it a pound sign).
I’ve never been one to bang my own drum, either. Self promotion is intimidating embarrassing. I’d rather be subtle and let people come to me. ~ Or stop waiting and just keep doing with zero return for my efforts ~ heck, I’m used to it being this way, so I can’t complain.
Did pre-digital era authors self-promote, I wonder? Was it Hemingway’s job to get the word out? Did Virginia Woolf or Jane Austen run through town hawking their latest publication? I can’t blame the Indie approach for this, because even the Traditional houses are starting to insist that we, the hopeful, promote our own work rather than having them do it.
~~~~~~~~~~Fight Or Flight!~~~~~~~~~
JuNoWriMo: 16,340 words