Today I’d like to introduce a fellow author, Rick McCallion, who I’ve invited to write a guest blog post. Enjoy!
Battle of the Independent Author
As I’ve managed to wade into the process of writing my first novel, one of my first thoughts was that there’s tremendous benefit to self-publishing. The unfortunate reality is that the vast majority of new and aspiring authors will find it difficult to grab the attention of a reputable publisher without having a following.
For this reason, I’ve spent a significant amount of time building my following and social media presence and this has meant that I haven’t spent as much time as I’d like in actually writing my novel. My biggest learning experience through this process is that there’s a very fine line between the importance of writing (there’s no sense promoting a product that won’t exist) and promoting (the great novel that is published without a marketing and social media strategy is akin to the tree falling in the forest).
Part of my strategy of growing my following has been to publish the first few chapters of Pieces of Silver free of charge. Although my novel is still in its infancy, I thought that it was important to use the opening chapters of this crime/thriller as a teaser, to gauge interest, gather review and feedback and to hopefully get a cache of beta readers who will offer feedback as the story progresses. For those interested in the story, it’s available on the Kobo bookstore at the link provided at the end of this post – or contact me directly and I will send out the opening chapters via a PDF document.
I’ve also self-published additional short stories free of charge. In the afterword of each published story, I include a blurb about myself and promote my other stories/pieces of work. In addition, I include a link where the reader can choose to sign up for my author newsletter. One thing that I have found is that people love (1) free stuff and (2) a chance to win. Along those lines, I always include a free short story with my newsletter and with each newsletter, I award a lucky subscriber with a $25 gift card. Each of these stories are also available via the Kobo website or via email if requested.
Is it slow going? Yes, definitely! I’d be lying if I said that I was slightly disappointed that the inertia has been much slower than I anticipated. That having been said, I also know that this game of “word of mouth” is a slow battle and I’m very confident that I will reach that tipping point where the inertia picks up. There’s no room of impatience. I’m quite sure that I’m on the right track and I’m doing the right things and until then, I’ll persevere and stay the course!
I’d like to thank Wanda for the opportunity to write this guest blog! If anyone is interested, please feel free to visit my website to receive further information, sign-up for my newsletter or read my blog on writing and reading.
Kobo Bookstore: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/search?query=Rick%20McCallion&fcsearchfield=Author
Newsletter Signup: http://eepurl.com/bcK4wL