Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Shameless Self Promotion

In Rolland Love's Q&A the other day, he talked about shameless self promotion. I think a lot of new writers, especially, have it in their heads that they can sell their writing while sitting within their introverted shells most of us writers share.
That all they have to do is sit in their offices plunking out literary masterpieces on their computers and their agents or editors will lead them to published glory.
When the surprising reality of the writing life is revealed, their dreams are shattered because they are writers, not marketers!
I really liked Rolland's story of how his book found its way to Hollywood, because it is an example of how you can market just doing normal things, such as getting your haircut.
I thought about all the unique ways I've marketed my writing without even trying:

  • When I found out a person I know was flying to Hawaii, I reminded her it would be a long flight and she should read my book (she hadn't yet) while on the plane. When she did, several people asked her about it.
  • I've sold numerous books at my favorite sushi bar. Conversations with other customers and the wait staff have led to "What do you do?" When I tell them I'm a writer, I always include the bit about my book. Of course, I always have copies in my car.
  • I choose to join professional organizations now based on how much I believe in their mission, which makes me want to give back by volunteering. The more I volunteer, the more work that seems to come to me through that six degree connection people talk about now. I call it creating good mojo for my writing.
  • When sending out my book launch party announcements to other writers in a professional organization, I inadvertantly wrote one out to someone in California. Turns out, this guy is a screenwriter. He asked for a copy of the book, and while he said he couldn't use it for anything he was working on, it's out there. And when your work is out there, you never know what will happen to it.
  • My writing and blog postings have re-connected me with people who I'm sorry I lost contact with in the first place. While it might not net me work, you never know. But this one is mostly about the good mojo it's brought into my life.


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