Wednesday, October 7, 2015

I'm Not WORTHY!



Halo, fine peoples! And welcome to first Wednesday, which is the monthly meeting of the Insecure Writers Support Group.

So I've blogged a lot recently about trying to get my writing mojo back in line. And I am making progress. But there is an elephant in the room... one that knocked me off that pony to begin with. I really suck at promoting myself. Part of it is I hate it, so I have not had the discipline to make myself learn to do it.

But see a couple of my beloved writer friends have invited me into their ranks for some cross-promoting, collective projecting, building platformy, learning, doing quality stuff. But I totally feel out of my league. They a OODLES of books each. I have six and three of them are really part of one big one. I haven't published ANYTHING in 2015 because I got knocked off that pony in January and proceeded to spend the next six months with my arms over my head trying not to get kicked.


These ladies have NETWORKS and SYSTEMS and they talk about stuff that blows me away. I'm like “Wait, whut?” I've never put together a real promotion package. I don't have graphics skills so I don't all the brilliant stuff to go with promoting. I mean I have a couple buddies who've helped but I only feel like I can ask so much for free and since I've made all of about $40 with A Shot in the Light (Actually I've lost money as I paid for editing)

So where to I find the gumption to learn to do this stuff I don't really even want to know how to do but know I need to do? I really really don't want to let these ladies down but right now there is such a large pile to learn that I feel overwhelmed and can't even make myself start...

If it were you, what would you learn first? What is the single best thing you learned how to do in the pool of bizillions of things we are meant to learn?

Thanks in advance if you can help!!!

And don't forget to go visit some other insecure writers today!!!

26 comments:

Jan Morrison said...

No books published yet, but still I'll manage to dispense advice. The nerve. First off try to think of your book when promoting, not yourself. Put yourself behind you (a kind of yoga) and stand up tall and brave for your work. It needs you to be a fierce advocate. Second, the gang you're with might know more about publicity, but they know something else- a team with the Tartlette on it is a team that has energy, fun, and derring do. They know that your passion is worth having to explain to you some technical term for getting bums in seats -a theatre publicity term! Love you to bits, and I ain't whistling dixie, cuz I don't whistle and don't know the tune.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I'm still learning and I wrote a book on promoting.

Start by asking other authors what worked best for them. You'll get a lot of answers and a couple will really click with you. Randi Lee posted a great idea on my blog this past Monday, and one I need to try myself.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Newsletters are most effective.

And indirect marketing approaches (tweaking keywords, metadata, making the books available in more platforms) work better for me than social media or cross-promo, but that's just me!

I'd recommend Canva for the design-impaired (like me!) It's drag and drop and cloud-based.

Nancy Gideon said...

I feel your pain. In fact promo demon is what I'm talking about in my IWSG post today. Baby steps, Hart. Do what you're comfortable with. Someone once told me to approach PR as if you were doing it for someone else. That really takes the pressure off. Get back on that pony!!

Arlee Bird said...

Jan hit on my main point which was to separate yourself from your work when promoting and focus on that. Disassociate yourself from your book as much as possible so that you don't take criticism too harshly--sure easier said than done.

I think the more you work at the promotion, the more natural it will start coming to you. Once you've gotten pretty comfortable with that scene then start promoting yourself. Author brand is important I think, but it's also more difficult because then it starts getting very personal and that can be scary.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I'm not good at promotion and marketing either so I don't have much advice. Maybe pick the one thing you'd really like to learn, and go with that? Don't worry so much about what you think you should be doing marketing-wise and focus more on what you want to be doing?

T. Powell Coltrin said...

It's when we get the wind knock out of us that we have to breathe again. I think you're back on the road to success. You are so blessed to have friends that will help you do this. So DO IT.

Chemist Ken said...

I think my daughter suffers from that right now, after having dealt with bullies in high school last year. All you can do is take things one step at a time and build your confidence back up. Good luck!

Karen Walker said...

I'm in pretty much the same boat as you, Hart. I'm just putting one foot in front of the other doing what I feel I can. Right now it's hosting a book reception at a local bookstore on the day my book becomes available. And I've asked bloggers to volunteer to host me for a guest post. Just start small and go from there. Sigh!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Get back on that pony!
There are a ton of marketing ideas at the IWSG site. Hopefully they will help you.

Sarah Foster said...

I haven't even gotten past the writing stage so I know pretty much zero about marketing. Just take it one step at a time and try not to get too overwhelmed.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Hart - try local, do some voluntary work with other writers, in school etc or at the library ... and promote locally - perhaps try local paper and write a column ... go for it! Cheers Hilary

Sylvia Ney said...

Wow! It's interesting how many of us have been struggling this year. I talked about worry on my own blog today. I am so glad you have friends that can offer you a support system. Best of luck riding that pony through the rest of 2015 and into 2016!

Madilyn Quinn said...

I'm going to school for marketing. I get the gist of it, but still have a lot to learn and have to get over this paralyzing fear that I'm just not going to reach anyone/they'll hate me. So I feel ya. I hope things get better!

- Madilyn Quinn @ NovelBrews

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I think making and maintaining contacts helps the most with promotion. And start out small. Daily Twitter or Facebook posts or whatever social media you prefer. Promotion is the toughest part of writing for me.

Susan Says

Ryan Carty said...

I wish, wish, wish I had good advice, but I am terrible at promoting my writing. I can't even bring it up around people who are supposed to like me, let alone push my wares on a reading populace. Still, the advice of pushing your work, not yourself seems good to me. Much the way one deals with rejection (it's not me they rejected, just the writing), and keeps pushing through, submitting work, distancing the personal from the product seems a valuable skill.

Andrew Leon said...

That the best way to promote yourself is to keep writing.

TBM said...

My best advice is to study indie authors who are successful. They seem to know where to begin and what's important.

Juneta Key said...

I'm learning too, I watch webinars about it. I have taken a couple of course, but still I know nothing. Some things work for some authors well, while not so well for others. It seems we just need to learn and try, if works use it, if it don't try something else.

One thing I read is about using the right keywords for Amazon other search engines type sites and SEQ on your website to generate traffic hits, so people look, but really I don't know either.

I am reading, watching and following successful Indie Authors such as Chuck Wendig, Joanna Penn, Holly Lisle, Simon Whistler's podcast, Dean Wesley Smith and his wife Kristine Kathyrn Rusch etc. There are a few more, but those were off the top of my head. They all have to market and they talk about it on their blogs, in books etc.

Oh and D'vorah Lanksey Marketing Made Easy is another source with courses and tons of information and some webinars, http://www.bookmarketingmadeeasy.com/

I saw this course about marketing and readers--I want to do it, but can't right now--Your First 10,000 Readers by Nick Stephenson you can check it out here http://noorosha.com/ The webinar was awesome and I learned a lot just watching it, He offers a free course too from the site I listed here.

All those are things I am watching and trying to learn from and researching info. Marketing and promotion may be harder than getting the book written, so I am trying to learn as I go,
http://www.bookmarketingmadeeasy.com/

Juneta Key said...

lol, oops I meant to leave my signature and instead left a web address for Marketing Made ease signoff. Here is what it should have been
Juneta Writer's Gambit

authorcgcoppola.com said...

God, I am right there with you. I have no clue about anything promotion-wise. Hang in there ~ you're not alone!

Karen Walker said...

Hi, so how do I email you to take you up on your kind offer to help promo on 10/31?
Can't find it here.

C.D. Gallant-King said...

I'm certainly no expert, but I agree with those who said the best marketing is your next book. Keep writing, keep generating content.

dolorah said...

I guess that's why I write and submit short stories; not marketing to deal with. I'm still not making any money, but not spending it either!

G. B. Miller said...

I read, watch, observe and try to work in those things which I feel comfortable in doing.

I know it ain't much advice, but it's brief and to the point.

Father Nature's Corner

Helena said...

Oh please, you think you suck at promoting yourself or your books? My plan to promote anything is to get famous by photographing a bigfoot and then putting that (exclusive) photo on the cover of The Compass Master. I mean, that oughta sell copies, right?

A few commenters here who are much wiser than I seem to have some good suggestions, and I really hope they help you, Hart, 'cause you and your books deserve the best.