Originally posted on the Xchyler Publishing blog, Wednesday, May 15, 2013
And now for my daily dose of The Irony Connoisseur:
This morning I responded to a post in a thread on The X’s ‘Authors’ Facebook page reflecting on a blog post by Mary Walters (the Militant Writer) about how much time we authors waste promoting ourselves on social media (SM). With my tongue firmly and consciously in my cheek I’m going to cut and paste my post here, probably with an edit or two to make my writing appear better than it was off the cuff:
I ended with this:
“I say all this as a confirmed non-reader of blogs. Sorry folks, I don’t give a crap about some cute thing your cat did or what you had for breakfast. 99.99% of blogs I’ve ever seen are mere exercises in narcissism. Give me content or give me death.”
But I first responded with this:
“I will freely admit to agreeing with Mary Walters (the Militant Writer), but only after I read her post twice and digested it thoroughly. IF my social media strategy is about reaching out to single readers and bombarding them over and over with my self-promotion in the attempt to sell them a single copy of my book, I am indeed wasting my time. I’m providing my readers with proverbial fodder for the recycling bin, just like every other junk mailer. Those efforts quickly reach the point of diminishing returns.
“BUT if my social media strategy is focused on attracting the attention of those whose business it is to review new work, to provide them with fodder for their blogs or review columns, then I may actually accomplish something–assuming, of course, that I have quality product to offer and am not inviting people to eviscerate my marketing effort with the kiss of death of a scathing knowledgeable, credible review. Because let’s face it: nobody has the time to write a review of a book they really couldn’t stand unless it’s by a big-time author; they have thousands of books they *could* review, but only choose a few.
“(In this case me = Xchyler marketing, the collective effort on behalf of us all, as well as me = me.)
“I’m 100% with you [Mary Walters] that I don’t listen to anyone’s self-promotion. But I do read reviews, and I make my buying decisions accordingly.
“In sum, I want (as do we all) to become a household name like Dan Brown, who just with his name on a new release guarantees millions of dollars in sales. But until then I will labor diligently to at least have my name out there, so that if some would-be reviewer googles me I’ll show up and show up strong. Toiling away in solitary splendor in my writing cave isn’t going to accomplish that.”
That’s what I wrote, and I’m standing by it, even if of the three people who will ultimately see it, two have already done so. (And no, one of them is not my mom: even she doesn’t read my writing; she leaves that to my long-suffering wife. And my editor.) My reach might not be long–yet–but the act of reaching is necessary.