As a writer who chose the self-publishing route, you will quickly find that you must do a lot of work yourself. You may think that the difficult work is behind you after you write the book. Oh, no – it has just begun!
I mentioned in previous posts that you can find people to do some of the work for you. These services usually are not free, though. And, whether or not you pay someone else, you make the final decision about everything from formatting of your book to artwork to website design.
I have found this part of the process to be a bit annoying. While I enjoyed some aspects like website creation, other tasks have been daunting. Take Facebook, for example. Until I published this book, I did not have a Facebook page. I am one of those rare individuals who have been “in the dark.” My reason is simple – if you are my friend, we already talk, text, and email. I don’t need to “like” you on the Internet. I already like you in real life!
Unfortunately, when you are trying to market a book, you cannot have that viewpoint. Your readers need a way to get in touch with you and follow what’s going on. A website and blog are nice, but not everyone goes there. Like it or not, people prefer searching on FB.
I have spent hours trying to get an author page setup on FB. I am not technically illiterate. I know that a “thin client” is not a person who won the battle with his/her weight. I have setup complex software and created new processes and procedures. Why is FB so damn confusing?? Maybe part of the fault is mine. While I am on FB, I cannot help but think that it is a HUGE waste of time.
So, the moral of the story is you may find yourself taking on tasks that have nothing to do with writing a book. What do you do? You have a couple of options.
If you do it yourself, the Internet is a good resource for learning more about marketing. Find out what venue works best for what you are trying to market. For example, readers who like Steam Punk might not be interested in a book about 17th-century musical instruments. Also, think about what your technical abilities and interests are. Do you have friends who could help? Are you willing to take classes to improve your skills?
You can opt to have other people build this stuff for you. That will likely cost money. You should set a budget for the project, just as you would anything else. It is easy to spend thousands of dollars that you may never recoup from your book’s sales. A quick Google search can help you locate people who could help. I prefer using trusted sources, though. Try to find websites that tailor to your genre and see what other authors use. I am a big fan of the folks at storywonk.com.
Regardless who does the work (you or someone else), you must do some sort of marketing work. You took the time to write the book. People who are not your friends or family should read it, right? That’s the point of marketing. You want readers!
I still haven't figured out how to set up that *&^% Facebook page. Not an account, a Page. I can create it, yet the URL does not work. Grrrrrr....see what I mean about the problems of "do it yourself?"