I ought to qualify the following by first of all saying how much of a people person I am not. It’s not that I don’t like people, it’s just that I am ‘not good’ with them. ‘Not good’ depends largely upon what kind of person they are I suppose. But I find my simple life tends to run smoother when there are no people around.
A side effect of this self-imposed exile is that I find it difficult to blend in with the crowds. No, not difficult; uncomfortable.
I have been an e-book published writer since mid-2011. In April 2012, I was told to pull my finger out and actually let people know my books were available. I cringed. So how do I do that, I asked. Twitter, Facebook and some writing forums, I was told. Righto, I said.
I joined Twitter and stared at it for hours wondering what the hell you did with it. I still don’t understand it. Facebook is getting better for me; I recently had a little tuition, but I still find it largely confusing. And that brings me to the forums. I chose two forums: Kindle Users Forum (KUF) and Goodreads (GR).
And I did all I thought an author should do. I put my name about and advertised my wares. And well, that was about all really.
And then, quite suddenly, nothing happened! Sales did not go through the roof. My bank manager never once rang to ask if he could take me to lunch. So I did what the advertising and promotions guru inside me suggested: I forgot all about pushing myself onto people in the forums and just enjoyed being there and being there as part of a group of readists and writists. Sure, I still tell people what’s new in my little person-free world, but I tend to enjoy their company more than anything else.
If I’m feeling outgoing, I can have a genuine laugh, and if I’m feeling fragile, I don’t have to mingle at all. These are my kind of people!
This blog was entitled The Negative Effects of Promotion, so I’d better tell you what they are. Promotion kills writing. Do one or the other and do it well. Do both and you may as well not bother. Do either poorly and you may as well not bother.
So, always one to follow good advice, I dabble with promotion simply because to do none would be silly when there are so many clever authors out there who must spend days at a time promoting themselves in all manner of clever and even devious ways. I cannot do that because of lack of skill and lack of time. So, despite my own advice, I dabble. Some’s better than none, right?
Indeed, for me, anything more than a dabble keeps me away from the writing keyboard longer than I’m comfortable with. And further, it takes me out of my story for far too long. Reality is like a blow-torch to the ice of a tale.