If you weren't aware of it already, I'm going to share with you a not so little secret when it comes to publishing your work. Whether or not your novel, poetry and short story collections, memoir, self- help, nonfiction etc. will be published by a press/publishing house or you're self-publishing it, you must GET THE WORD OUT months in advance.
But how do you get the word out?
Simply put getting the word out is informing people and garnering interest in the product which in this case is your book. In order to do so, you have to make a business plan. I know, I know, you’re a writer and what you do is write. You know nothing of business and more than likely your writing speaks for itself so why should you? I understand. However, if your dream or goal is to gain followers/readers outside of family and friends and make a stable living on writing, you’re going to have to take those thoughts and fling it far, far, far away. You can no longer assume that you’re a writer or an author. You have to start thinking of yourself as an writerpreneur or authorpreneur.
What is a writerpreneur or authorpreneur?
I first heard these terms when I watched a live Google+ video session hosted by Laura B. Williams and joined by Nina Amir. Nina Amir is the author of “How To Blog A Book” and “The Author’s Training Manual.” She’s also self-published 12 books, is a bloggist of four blogs and known as an Inspiration to Creation Coach who helps to move clients from book ideas into a finished manuscript and into careers as authors.
In the video, The Writing Biz- Your Writing Business Plan With Nina Amir, Nina Amir mentions these two terms and explains them as a writer or author who pursues writing or authorship as a profession to earn money. It is not just a hobby where your writing is locked away in a draw for only the writer/author or a select few of family and friends to read. It is approached as a business where your writing/book(s) is the trade of goods and/or services to consumers, the reading community.
So how do you view your writing? Is it a hobby or something done for therapeutic purposes? Or is it something you want to make a career out of?
Now if you’ve come to a decision that writing a career field, let’s get back to the original content of today’s post. Getting the word out is the most basic of business planning. In fact, it could be seen as a foundation and from what I’ve learned and experienced, the most fundamental way of getting the word out is SUPPORT. Support from other writers, whether they are aspiring and established writers, are gold mines. With the importance of the author platform, you can easily find an author’s/writer’s blog to subscribe to and form rapports with that author and other commenters.
You could also join writing community websites where you can hone your craft and connect with other writers who’ll be more than ready to give reviews and share your publication news on their sites/blogs/FaceBook etc. In fact, I’m on YouWriteOn.com,Bookcountry.com, Authonomy.com and Scribophile.com. Scribophile in particular, I'm very grateful to as I was able to connect and make a few poetry friends who follow my poetry and writing posts, like it and are more than happy to spread the word about my poetry chapbook, “Can You Catch My Flow?”
So the #1 lesson of today is: Never. Underestimate. The. Power. Of. Word. Of. Mouth!
My next posts will go more in depth into the business plan and promotion. Meanwhile, I’d love to hear from you about the ways you gained supporters and built your fanbase. Please share in the comments section below.
PS. What do you think of the caption below? I recently learned of a design website called Canva.com from an email post by Nina Amir which inspired an idea to combine my poetry and the site images as a promotion tool.