I recently read that the end of the aloof Author is here. It is now, they proclaimed, the era of the Writer, the one who relates to and interacts with readers. On some level, I know they’re on the money. So what are we reclusive writers to do?
Take promotion. I have a tough time promoting myself. And it amazes me, because for years as a journalist I promoted a lot of people and a lot of causes. But when it comes to putting my own best foot forward, I’d rather pull my skirt hem down until no one sees the thing. Apparently, there is something about the “I,” which I’m more comfortable writing about as the “they.”
Not that self promotion can’t be well done. I’ve seen it so done. I admire it most when it comes wrapped with a lot of other thoughts and points and background and not just yelling, “Hey, here I am.” When well done, the link to the book seems to follow as logically “as the day the night.” I admire the writer’s effort and mutter to myself, “Well done.” I need to study their examples more closely and perhaps learn a few tricks to use to help myself.
Then, there is social media in which you are to bond with people you’ve never met. Huh? I come from an age when as a freshman college student I was no longer addressed as Anna but rather as Miss Drake. (Wow, did that make me feel grown up.) Then, later, after returning to college to complete my degree, I discovered even the professors now were addressed by their first names. I’m still struggling to get over that shock.
Still, I’m not opposed to meeting new people. In fact, I’d love to have more followers on Twitter and friends on Facebook and people who feel free to post replies to me here.. And I was thrilled when someone who read my novel tracked down my Facebook Author’s Page and told me how much she had enjoyed my reading my mystery. That was heady stuff.
Then, there’s the question of time. In addition to writing, I keep both a flower and vegetable garden, belong to a card group or two, and enjoy occasionally visiting my children and grandchildren in their far-flung locations. Add to that the need to keep groceries in the house and prescriptions filled, and suddenly time to write becomes precious. And I’m retired. I can’t imagine how people who still work find time to promote themselves.
But I’ve been lucky. I don’t do much self promotion, but on one ebook outlet, at least, my little novel is selling at a rate quite good for me. So I’m lucky because even without spending a lot of time or effort on promotion, my little book is chugging along robustly on its own. And to all of you who have bought the little bugger. THANK YOU!