I’m delighted to welcome my second guest blogger of the month, Sue Moorcroft. Sue is an award winning romantic novelist (more details of her work below). Sue kindly agreed to write a piece on the importance of self promotion as a writer. Hope you enjoy, and remember feel free to comment!
Why am I writing this post?
Why will I write the next two blog posts I plan to write this morning, another guest blog plus an entry on my own?
And chat to people on Twitter and Facebook?
It’s because I love talking about myself …
Yes, but apart from that! It’s ‘promo’.
Promo is part of the life of every writer I know. We understand the need to keep our names visible and interest people in our books and the Internet has provided us with a massive global platform on which to do it. Wonderfully, the platform is interactive and conversational. Comments on blogposts, Facebook threads, conversations on Twitter, none of them are just ways of beating prospective readers over the head with constant ‘Buy my book! Buy my book!’ or ‘Love me! Love me!’ messages. Each is a valuable person-to-person connection.
I realise that some of the people who fall into conversation with me DO buy my books. I know, because they tell me. They come back and tell me that they enjoyed the book and ask me about future books. In conversation, they become comfortable with my voice or my sense of humour, we chat about the subjects I’m researching and they’re interested by what I’m going to make of the subject. I ask the Twitterverse what a hot hero might wear to a halloween party, and they tell me he should go as a devil in red lycra – they feel they have a stake in the book, and I get help that I genuinely want. The Twitterverse has also found me a US attorney, told me how to hack a website; Facebook has provided me with a host of heroes with spooky eyes and the name of a clear anti-freeze. (Which led to a fascinating conversation about whether I was planning a murder and whether cooking and eating them would be a good way to dispose of the body. Also whether barbecue sauce would be appropriate. But I won’t be putting that in a book.)
I feel privileged to be writing in an era when readers can click ‘contact me’ on my website, befriend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter specifically to say, ‘I enjoyed your book’. (Or, ‘Here’s how to cook and eat a body …’)
So, yes, blogs, Twitter and Facebook are part of promo. But they’re not about courting readers – they’re about enjoying knowing them.
Sue Moorcroft writes romantic novels of dauntless heroines and irresistible heroes. Her last book, Love & Freedom, won the Best Romantic Read Award 2011 at the Festival of Romance and her next, Dream a Little Dream, published on 1 November 2012, is the one with the devil in lycra.
Combining writing success with her experience as a creative writing tutor, she’s written a ‘how to’ book, Love Writing – How to Make Money From Writing Romantic and Erotic Fiction (on superspecial promo price of £0.77 at the time of writing this blog.) Sue writes a regular Formula 1 column, short stories, serials, articles and courses and is the head judge for Writers’ Forum. She’s a Katie Fforde Bursary Award winner.