WRITERS AS FELLOW PROMOTERS
By Marilyn Meredith
If you’ve been following this tour of mystery writers, then you know that we’ve gotten together to allow each other the spotlight on our individual blogs. I’ve had folks who know nothing about the writing business wonder why on earth I would help a competitor.
To be honest, I’ve never considered another mystery writer to be in competition with me.
The writing business is like no other. The New York Publishers have been a more or less closed club, with a writer having to go through an agent to even get an editor to look at a query, much less a manuscript. When a book is accepted for publication, the author may get an advance—but before he or she sees another penny, that book must pay back the amount of the advance and any other costs connected to the publication. Only the authors who received huge advances get any kind of help with promotion.
Things are changing a bit with the small presses and the of course the ease of self-publishing. I’m not going to go into all these changes because my topic is authors promoting authors. One thing I will mention though is publishers large or small want to know what the writer’s market plan is before they are offered a contract.
Those of us using the Internet for promotion have come to learn that other authors can be a partner in the business of marketing a book. Never before has there been a way for authors to learn about one another and to lend a helping hand.
For this particular tour, we have Anne K. Albert for thinking up the tour and figuring out the logistics of who would blog where and when—no simple task. Others of us went out and sought other mystery writers we knew who might be interested in joining us. There’s a lot of writing connected with this tour as each author must come up with original ideas so each post will be different even though it is promoting the same book or books.
While we’re on this tour we have to promote the guest on our own blog each day and promote the blog that we’re a guest on, letting people know on lists we belong to, Facebook and Twitter about each new blog.
Other things we do for one another is read each other’s books and write reviews for places like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and of course the wonderful listserve DorothyL.
In the physical world, we let our fellow writers know about book and craft fairs that are being held in nearby places; sometimes we might share a table. If we’re planning a library event, we ask other authors to be on a panel with us.
Writing a book is lonely work; spending some time with other writers is fun even if it is only on the Internet. Besides, other authors are the only ones who really understand what this crazy business is all about and why we continue to do it.
Marilyn Meredith is the author of over thirty published novels, including the award winning Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series, the latest Bears With Us from Mundania Press. Writing as F. M. Meredith, her latest Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel is Angel Lost, the third from Oak Tree Press. Marilyn is a member of EPIC, Four chapters of Sisters in Crime, including the Central Coast chapter, Mystery Writers of America, and on the board of the Public Safety Writers of America. Visit her at http://fictionforyou.com and her blog at http://marilymeredith.blogspot.com/
In Marilyn’s latest book, Bears With Us, Deputy Tempe Crabtree has her hands full when bears turn up in and around Bear Creek, a young teen commits suicide and his parents’ actions are suspicious, a prominent woman files a complaint against Tempe and her preacher husband Hutch, a love affair from long ago comes to light, and a woman suffering from dementia disappears.