So you can read my books

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


Rivka Kawano followed me on Twitter with the announcement of her webinar about promotion:

I do blood runs all the time so webinars are out of the question for me, but it got me to thinking:

How do you Book Promote in good taste?

Social Media is just that: Social.

Have you ever gone to a party where another guest is talking too loud, talking too long, and talking only about him or herself?

He must have slept through his father's lecture on how to be a good guest.

All of us are guests on whatever social media we post snippets on -- even our blogs are given us FREE courtesy of Blogger.


Our snippets on whatever media we use reflect who we are and what manner of prose we write.  If we drone on about what is uninteresting to 99% of viewers, they will be put off by us.

The very sight of our name will elicit a groan: not a way to prompt folks to buy our books.

If we amuse, leave our readers on social media smiling, feeling good about themselves -- they will feel better about us.

What annoys you, amuses you, puzzles you?  Write primarily about those things -- then OCCASIONALLY mention your books.

If people find you a kindred spirit, they will more likely sample one of your books.



I have given away Kindles,

autographs of Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Dean Koontz, Laurel Hamilton, all of the actors in THE AVENGERS, IRON MAN, and THOR in contests for purchases and honest reviews.

They don't work.  You can't buy love. 

Sure you can buy a kiss, but it will not mean anything, and you will seldom get a voluntary SECOND one.

Most girls have been hounded by a desperate male admirer for whom they felt no passion. 

How did you feel about that person?  Do you want potential readers to feel that way towards you and your book?


Offer a free critique for a person's first three chapters in exchange for an honest review.  But be honest in that critique!

Each visitor to your blog has individual tastes and needs.  You know which person might be open to helping you out.

Offer something meaningful to each of those persons in exchange for reading your book which you give them FREE.

You wouldn't be a writer if you were not creative. 

I bet I have just sparked a great idea in your mind with this last snippet.  Run with it.  See where it leads. 

As Victor Standish says: "Even the wrong road leads somewhere."


They're EVERYWHERE!  You can now recite them from rote, can't you?

Do you even LISTEN to them anymore?

BOOK TOURS and COVER REVEALS have become like those political ads.  Eyes skim over them in the blog lists and do not visit.

Why bother?  You've seen it all before.

And they elicit groans from visitors who wanted ORIGINAL material from the blog that usually entertains them.

GUEST POSTS have gotten to be almost as bad:

Most visit a favorite blog, see a guest post, and groan, "What are they trying to SELL ME THIS TIME?"


Be entertaining, funny, and leave the reader wanting to know more about you.  Leave it to your host to mention your blog or your book. 

It might be novel for your host NOT TO MENTION YOUR BOOK only your blog. 

Let them seek you out and find your latest book in your sidebar.

I hope that this has helped in some small way.

What do you think are some fun, friendly ways
to promote your books?


  1. Loved this!!! I think you do this perfectly, Roland. You definitely have a strong presence, but you've never pushed in an obnoxious way. I think the best way is to definitely socialize and GET TO KNOW PEOPLE… because then people definitely want to support people they care about. :)

  2. These points are all so true! I have noticed that cover reveals, etc are getting to be too much sometimes. This whole writing thing has been such an education for me in regards to marketing and sales. I honestly never knew just how hard it is to be a salesperson and make people want to part with their money to buy your product. I'm an introvert by nature so social media is hard for me, but I'm working on trying to actually connect with people on Twitter, etc instead of just bombarding them with info about books.

  3. I've always tried to entertain and rarely mention my books.
    I won't post the same stuff everyone else is posting for a new release either.
    There are ways to make guest posts fun. Top ten lists are fun. (Although not top ten things about your main character.)
    I need to let Mini-Alex promote my next book...

  4. Thanks, Morgan:
    Yes, SOCIALIZE, letting people know you care about them as individuals not just a potential customer!

    I am the Wiley E. Coyote of Social Media! I flounder at it, hoping my friends will understand my heart! :-)

    Like you, I try to make my posts on friends' books unique, fun, and entertaining -- not the same thing they would run into on other posts advertising the book.

    The ghost of Mark Twain wants to meet Mini-Alex! I'll try to dissuade him. He tends to get us both into trouble!! :-)

  5. Ah, Roland, we are definitely running away from the same bad experiences. I love the analogies you offered of second kisses, desperate unrequited admirers. Nobody wants to be "that guy" but the writing community is littered with folks who are doing just that. It's great when a new idea sprouts and everyone is excited but then it gets done too many times and becomes hack. It's not that good ideas go bad, they get stale - which means when they fall out of disuse we can wait a while and try them again, fan the flames hot for a while. I wish I had a new idea but I like your suggestion. :)