Hello, my lovelies!
My name is Ines Vieira and I’m one of the lucky ladies that gets to be a part of this amazing project called Author Friends with Benefits. Now you probably don’t know me and I won’t hold that against you, but I’m basically just like most of you. An aspiring author who has published her first book and is currently trying to spread the word to the world that it exists.
When you take that leap of faith to self-publish we have to have in mind that this means that we have to self-promote too. And if you’re like me, working a nine to five, being a mom and a wife with family obligations, this sometimes can be a pretty tricky thing to accomplish. Hell, sometimes downright frustrating. Any of this sound familiar?
So what is this blog post about? Well, let me tell you, babes. You are not alone in the everlasting hustle of shedding some light on that piece of fiction that you worked so hard to complete. Once in a while, I’ll be on here posting tips, experiences and sometimes even the things that don’t work so that you can get an idea on how to promote and market your own book more efficiently. Hey, there are some ladies here that already have it together, but if you’re like me and still learning as you go along than I hope that my experiences will help you achieve your goals.
So, first of all, let me give you a little background story on me. Like I said before, I published my book last year and dove head first in this crazy world of self-publishing. Since I was a little girl, I always wanted to become a writer, but ultimately, life had other plans and I was able to get that same fulfillment teaching and coaching other people in various scenarios. I taught English for a few years as well as helped small-time offenders get their high school diploma.
Then I switched gears and took a job at a financial investment bank. Boy was that the wrong move! It was extremely time-consuming and restricting when in came to keeping up with my creativity. Teaching gave me that, banking, however, killed my creative soul! ( Yeah, I now I’m a drama queen, haha)
So I needed an outlet and fast. So one Halloween night ( Don’t ask me why it just happened to be on that night) I had an idea of a story and just started writing. Nine months later my book was complete with the biggest smile on my face. Now we all have had that one moment that you grab your computer or laptop and you just feel like your fingers can’t keep up with everything that you want to say. This, my lovelies, is what makes you a writer. That immediate feeling you have in your gut that tells you, you need to get this on the page before it disappears STAT. It’s not the sales or your bank account balance increasing, but the high of writing those two little words – The End. It’s an unbelievable feeling and all of us that belong to this crazy indie community can relate.
Everyone has their own back story on how they first started I bet yours was just as special as mine was to me. So you’ve finished your book, you got your cover, editing, and format down to a T and are pressing that amazing button that says publish. But now what? I wish I could say that this is the end of your struggle and that you can go on back to your computer and write your next story. But babes, it’s not. This is when the hustle is just starting. That book that you put your heart and soul to now needs to be let loose in the world and this means you got to freaking push it out there. And when I say push, I mean hit that sucker with a baseball bat out of the park kind of deal.
Now you’re thinking, well Ines how the hell can I do that? Baby steps my lovelies. Anything worth a damn, you’re going to have to work at. There is no miracle solution or secret that those bestselling authors have that made them get there. Hard work, perseverance and a bucket load of determination are the best allies you can have.
So first baby step that I can offer you today is be patient with the world as well as yourself. Believe that you’ve written something from the heart and that it will reach your target audience, whatever that may be, and touch them somehow. You’ve already taken one step that you should be proud of and that will, in fact, bear fruit and that was just being on Author Friends and Benefits site. You are trying to be involved in the indie community and that is exactly where you should be. The Internet is a wondrous thing, and social media can provide you with pages and articles like this one that will motivate and give you the tools you need to get your book noticed. Be active! Get people to recognize you as an individual and hear your voice. This will make you stand out and people will gain general interest in reading what you’ve put out.
I’m a big believer in paying it forward and anything that I learned, I have been vocal with my author friends. Be that positive or negative experiences. Hey, bad can be good too. Sometimes you have to go through these experiences to see what not to do in the future. Take it all in stride because, in the end, these errors are growing you to become that author you want to be.
Another piece of advice I can offer today is, don't forget to include your bloggers in your social community. Babes, your bloggers are the ones that will promote the hell out of your book if they love it. I love bloggers, seriously I am in awe of them. Don't get me wrong, I have had some let downs as well. I first contacted those big names that as a reader I went to in order to see what was new and might interest me. What I learned was this. Those high name bloggers, that have like over 50k followers are also busy as hell and most can only give their time to well-known authors and their books. There is nothing wrong with that. It is totally understandable that self-published authors don’t have the same hype behind them as well establish traditional authors do. But that doesn’t mean that we stop there now, does it? Nope! You reach those bloggers that are starting out or that are open to reviewing your book just for the pleasure of it. And my darlings there are so many bloggers like this. I have been lucky to get some amazing feedback from bloggers that took me under their wing and gave me some amazing advice, from promoting to teaser presentation. Not only that but also the friendships that you build with these up and coming bloggers are genuine and special. If they like your book, then they also show love for your characters and that in itself is a gift that keeps on giving because this means that those personas that you made up in your head are just as dear to them as they are to you.
So how do you go about reaching these bloggers? Well, I’m leaving two links that you can use below, but alternatively, you can also do the following. Go to the top ten best sellers of books in your genre. Pick the top three titles to start off with and write each one on Google with the word REVIEW before the name of the title. Like that you will have all the reviews done on that book and their respective bloggers site. This way you know that these bloggers are already interested in the type of genre you write about and will be more inclined in giving your book a try. When you reach out to them, make sure that your own voice comes out in your email. Again it's not only about promoting your book, you have to invest in you too. Don’t be shy my darlings, because what your voice is unique. Don’t ever be afraid to use it. It’s one of your best assets so be true to you and people will respond to that.
Well, I hope this post helped and gave you some tips and advice you can fall back on. My next post in the month of July will be about using promoting services to get your book out there. I’ll share my experience with sites like Book Deals and BookBub amongst others. Wish me luck babes and remember that you are already living the life of an author, so how freaking cool is that?!
Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B01JML15XI
As promised here are the links with a bunch of bloggers contacts:
And here is a list of bloggers that Author Rachel Burke has compiled of bloggers who are open to review requests: