Friday, February 16, 2018

Writing: Getting The Word Out

Rather than longing for the "good old days," when all a writer had to do was write, we have to realize that about a million books a year are published (according to figures that are five years old--I suspect the number is higher now). The task of an author is to make their book stand out so someone will purchase it--and read it--and tell someone else about it. It's still a matter of writing the best book possible, but we need to enlist others to help us get the word out.

When I became a published author, more than a decade ago, the term "street team" wasn't in wide usage. At that time, they were called "influencers." I still recall when the publisher of one of my first fiction novels asked me for the names of my influencers. I was told that these were people who'd help me get the word out about my novel. Gradually, I've accumulated a group of a dozen people, more or less, who do just that. There are men and women, older and younger, living in many parts of the country. They read a copy of my book and tell others about it, via reviews, word of mouth, local libraries, churches, and any other way that pops up.

Now some authors call them "street teams," and have closed Facebook groups for them, offer them freebies in addition to copies of the book in question, and in general cultivate them. What's coming next? No way to tell. Stay tuned.

For those of you who've helped make my most recent novella, Surgeon's Choice, a success, thanks. If you've read it but haven't left an honest review on sites like Amazon and/or Goodreads, please do it now. Just a sentence or two means a lot to authors.

What about publishing--either via a contract with a traditional publisher or done independently--would you like to hear? Let me know.

Tweet with a single click: How do authors get the word out about their books?


Patricia Bradley said...

I'm so glad I read this today! I had left a review on Goodreads and thought I'd put one on Amazon, but lo and behold no review for Surgeon's Choice showed on my profile. That is now remedied! And if I haven't already profiled Surgeon's Choice on my blog, I will next week. :-) Keep writing, Richard. Are you coming to ACFW this year?

Richard Mabry said...

Patricia, thanks for your comment and for the review. You (along with all other authors) recognize the importance of these--if only people knew the weight their few words carry.
I won't be at ACFW this year. I've cut way back on my travel, and will continue that for now, preferring to spend my time with my family, along with my writing (of course).

Jackie Smith said...

I just left my review on Amazon....and my copy of your book is on display at our library! I am anxiously waiting for your next book. Keep up the great writing,Richard.

Richard Mabry said...

Thanks, Jackie. The next book will be a novel, Guarded Prognosis. Should be ready for publication this summer. Then a novella for the end of the year.