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This is my weekly installment of “writing about writing,” in which I scan the world for material to help other writers. Today I discuss a blog post about the benefits of promoting yourself before you’re ready…
I help many different types of author, and one of them is people who want to write books.
But even though I’ve been doing this work for more than 20 years, no one ever has ever come to me with an already well-developed social strategy.
Do you know what I mean by that? I’m talking website, newsletter subscribers, Facebook followers, Twitter tub-thumpers, Instagram idols. Most of my new clients say something like, “well, I’m concentrating on writing my book first. I’ll get to all that other stuff later.”
This is always a mistake. You need an audience to read your book, don’t you? And if you don’t have that audience already, where are those readers going to come from?
Remember, it takes significant time to build an audience on any of the platforms I’ve mentioned above. And it takes most people at least a year or two to write their book. So use that time now, to start building your audience.
The peril of not taking this action is convincingly conveyed in a recent story by Catherine Baab-Muguira in Jane Friedman’s blog, under the headline Why you should start promoting your writing before you’re ready”.
As Baab-Maguira puts it: “Building an author platform is a long, hard road, or one of those epic train journeys in Agatha Christie during which someone’s definitely going to get murdered, maybe you. Best get it over with. Best start now, right away, no matter how rough your memoir draft is, no matter if your novel is only 163 words long as of 5 a.m. this morning. You don’t want to miss out on any popularity (or notoriety) you may happen to generate on purpose or by accident.”