Marketing: Every Writer's Bane Whether They'll Admit it or Not

I'm ten months into this blogging adventure. I have to admit I was pretty ambivalent about it at the front end. I tend towards being a private person, so journaling--which is what blogging is--was heretofore a one-on-one effort. Just me and my collection of leather-bound journals that contain my dreams, hopes, disappointments and random thoughts.

In addition to starting this blog, over the last year I've also developed presences on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Goodreads, Linked-In and now there's Pinterest. I still remember getting my profile together on Google+. I'd gotten my name in there and a couple of other things when my hands crashed down on the keyboard and I screamed, "Nooooooo!" It actually took a couple of months to force myself to go back and finish that profile. It's all pretty overwhelming, really. And I've just scratched the surface. There are lots more social media sites where I could paste my picture and make pithy little comments throughout each day.

Problem, other than the obvious one that I feel really exposed, is there are only so many hours in any of those days. If I spend a couple of them keeping up with social media, that's time I'm not spending writing, or exercising, or playing with my dogs or whipping up something interesting in my kitchen. Then there's my long term marriage. I really like spending time with my husband. And listening to music and watching movies. Gee, I have wireless feed to a big, flat screen television and I think I've only watched two movies in the past six months.

Everything is a balance. My current "pact with the devil" (as I've come to view social media) is that I limit my time posting on various sites to 45 minutes a day; half early in the morning and half at night. Unless it's a day when I create a new blog post. Then you can add about 45 more minutes to that total. I do not have feeds from any of the sites routed to my phone. So far, that seems to  be working. I think the technical term is detente. Where both sides maintain an edgy neutrality. So long as half a dozen new social media "must haves" don't crop up, I think I'll be okay.

Other aspects of marketing that are time consuming are researching sites to send books for reviews and attending science fiction and fantasy conventions. (Btw, the "cons" are really fun.) Then there are book blog tours. I'm just finishing my first one. It was hours of work at the front end creating a bunch of new blog posts and interviews, but it's paid off in sales. And I've learned a whole lot about web design, since I don't want to be dependent on someone else every time I want to change out something on my website.

All in all, the world of writing is fascinating. And not anything like I thought it would be during the months I was writing my first novel. I'm sure I'll continue to learn as time unfolds. Any thoughts on social media and marketing would be welcomed.


  1. Yup, the marketing side of things is a huge pain in the bum!

    After finishing a book I sit there shaking my fist at Amazon wondering why my stuff isn't selling.

    1. And I also ask myself why my stuff is selling. It's impossible to know which marketing ploy paid off which makes it extraordinarily difficult to know how to allocate my marketing dollars. At least so far, giveaways on Goodreads seem to reach more people than anything else I do.


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