Friday, April 19, 2013

Learn From Others

I learn something new everyday. Twitter is a great place to find links to blog posts written by authors who offer advice about publishing, marketing, and just about anything you want to know when it comes to getting your book noticed. I’ve learned much from my fellow authors this way, some of it useful, some of it not so useful. Here are some of the things I’ve read on blogs and my thoughts on them.

Twitter and Facebook is a waste of time.
            *I have to disagree here. If it wasn’t for social networks, many books for sale on Amazon would never get noticed. Amazon doesn’t list promo books with the free books of the day unless it’s in the top 100. So if your book isn’t in that category, how will folks find out about it? You could advertise in the newspaper, but unless your advertising budget has no limits, you’re wasting your time and money.
            I look for free books listed by folks on Twitter and Facebook. Rarely do I pay for a book on Amazon unless I’ve read and enjoyed a previous book by the same author. Another good venue is LinkedIn. I’m sure there’s more out there I haven’t discovered, but one can only do so much. 

Tweet catchy phrases to get someone’s attention.
            *Good advice. If you tweet just the title of your book and a link, it’s boring. A short sentence about the book or snippets of a review is much more interesting and grabs the reader’s attention. From there they might click on the View Summary link in the tweet and look at the cover, maybe even read a few of the reviews. Be as creative as you can. You’re a writer. That’s what you do. Note: I’m still working on my Tweeter skills.

Never write in first person.
            *Huh? I was reading a blog that had some very interesting tips, but when I got to this, I had to scratch my head. Some of the best books have been written in first person. Janet Evanovich immediately comes to mind. If the blogger had said never write in the present tense, I would have agreed.

Never write in present tense.
            *I said that just now. I downloaded a book that was written this way and I couldn’t get past the second chapter. It was like reading a Dick and Jane book. Remember those in grade school? Dick goes to the window. Jane sees him. Dick walks to the front door. Jane sees him. Boring.

Well, that’s all for now. I’m sure I’ll stumble on more interesting tips, and if I do, I’ll be sure to write about it. If you have one, feel free to share.

Keep this in mind: Blogs are written by people who want to share what they’ve discovered, but what works for them might not work for you. I say—Learn from others, but choose your own path.

Happy reading and writing! Ann

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