How to Sell Your First Novel
Every writer needs an author platform and that starts with social networking… it’s important
because readers need to know you exist before they can buy your book. Don’t wait, start now.
Use Twitter; weave into your tweets without labouring the point that you’re working on a novel.
Tell them its title and what it’s about. Make the Tweets interesting and you have a number
of potential customers who might also tell their friends to look out for your work. I mention
Twitter, but there are plenty of other networks out there.
Okay, you’ve built a social group and your book is written. Do you aim at the traditional
publishers or go indie? Well, the traditional hill is a difficult one to climb and I feel agents and
publishing editors might sit back to see which products appeal to the audience, EL James is a
good example. If I’m right a successful indie campaign will give you every chance of getting that
elusive traditional publisher, if that’s what will make you happy.
But is the indie option an easy one? Far from it, going down this route means you have to do
the promotion and marketing yourself, so if you’re not willing to sign over your life completely,
think again… Okay, you’re happy to do it, good, but you’ll soon learn that when you wrote ‘The
End’ it was the biggest piece of fiction in the book; it’s actually the beginning. First base, you
need a publicist. First question, can you afford one? No, go to second base. Yes, then research
the prospective business partners thoroughly, there’s a lot of snake oil out there. Oh, if you do
use a publicist you’ll need to publish in paperback as well as eBook. Second base, virtual tours,
you’re reading this so you’re seeing part of one of them, I hope you’re impressed. Other than
paying out for TV adverts, these tours seem to attract the most eyes.
I won’t go on too much, as I don’t want to take advantage of my kind host, but there is one
statement I must make before you get your book out there: The presentation of text, the cover,
and the quality of the work is of paramount importance to sales. The indie path is a medium
that allows anyone to publish anything, don’t subscribe to ‘that will do’ if you want to gain
public respect and retain their interest, you’d only be letting yourself down. Even if it nips at
your budget give your work every chance by having professionals improve the quality and
presentation. Editing, format of text, creation of cover picture and uploading the work onto your
chosen medium is not overly expensive and you want a book to be proud of.
One final comment, Monty Hall wasn’t a writer, he was a TV celebrity, but his words are
relevant: “Actually, I’m an overnight success, but it took 20 years.” So whatever you learn and
whatever strategies you might want to use, the real secret is to keep at it, and never give up!
Genre - Thriller, Crime, Suspense
Rating – R
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