Being a writer, is not necessarily about how well you can write, but rather, how well you can sell yourself.
This isn’t exactly a new concept, I mean ask anybody in a sales related profession. It isn’t the product, so much has how you sell it that counts. Sure, a solid product helps, but without the Gift of the Gab,you will not come very far.
In other posts I have spoken about my own inability to sell my books. It would seem that I am just not a salesperson, but it is not just an inability to promote myself effectively that is my hindrance. Financially, I am not in a position to sell my books. Why? Because I do not have so much as a Euro cent to invest in it. Every cent / penny / cent that I earn goes to either the bills, groceries or the kids.
I am sure I am not alone in this respect, and I have made the personal decision to not have any credit cards, or loans of any kind. So technically I am 100% debt free, which in itself, and in the present day is for some, about as wealthy as it gets.
Yet, as a 100% self published author, I have nobody else but me to fall back on and help generate sales. What this means is, I have to find out effective ways of marketing a book for free. By that, I do not mean small expenditures, or the even the $5 it takes to have my book listed on a few Internet sites I have found. I mean, I need to find ways of selling that cost absolutely zero.
It is certainly not an easy task.
The more I think about, the best free promotion is through Social Media. Twitter is my main marketing platform. While I like Facebook, I just don’t know how to successfully market on it. It is something I will have to learn.
Other than this however I am lost. I am not a natural socializer, and while virtual interactions are much easier – dare I say more enjoyable – for me, it remains something I have to work hard at.
Some people may read or interpret this post as being a Pity Me sort of outcry, but please understand, it is anything but. I would rather think of it the same as those time back in school when everybody sat there thinking the same question, but nobody was willing to stand up and ask it. To make their in-abilities public and risk the ridicule of the class, only for them to turn around and breath a collective sigh of relief.
Times are hard, and a great many families live paycheck to paycheck, and I do not have the luxury of being able to call writing my main source of income. So where does that leave me. We all know, and it has been said by pretty much every blogger that ever existed, that writers write. We need to, it is just who we are as people. But sales, that is a different kettle of fish altogether. Yet, to revert to my opening statement, being a writer in current times, especially a self published writer, is not about being a writer. Not anymore.
Just think about how easy it is to publish a book. Not the whole drafting, writing, editing, writing, editing roundabout that writers go through, but the act of publishing in itself. Upload a file. The is it in a nutshell. There are so many books out there, that the selling has to become the main prerogative of a writer, simply because we have to shout that much louder to have our voice heard.
So tell me friends, writers, transient visitors who found this page by chance, how do you promote your work. Do you pay for it, or are you working on a budget of zero. In search of a way to promote yourself that will allow you to focus on what it is your love, writing the books that you need to sell.
It is a kind of double-edged sword really. The more you love writing, the more you need to write, the more you will inevitably produce, but then, the pressure to sell increases. Do you think it is easier to sell two books than it is one… now there is a post for tomorrow.