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Facebook for gaining following before release


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#1 Raserei

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 10:05 AM

It's my understanding that not only do agents and publishing houses like when writers approach them already with an online presence, but it helps in the sales and marketing once the book goes to print. (please, correct me if I have the wrong idea, here!)

 

How does one begin to do this before that first book has a release date? I write adult fantasy. What would a writer, hopeful author, publish on their page in order to gain that presence?

 

I'm not a big twitter user, but I'll be looking to start something there as well.


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#2 mwsinclair

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 04:10 PM

One way is to establish a blog and develop a following/readership there. While you do that, it's highly recommended that you develop a mailing list, too. That is your mailing list and not subject to the whims of Facebook, Twitter, or other social media platforms. I mean, you don't even get the email of a reader who buys your book on Amazon, so if you can establish a following and your own list, you build an audience that can convince an agent or publisher that you're worth their time and investment.

 

To me, a blog following is more significant than a Twitter or Facebook following. But you need to feed them content that keeps them coming back. It's part of marketing yourself, and it's important. But it can also be a huge time suck. Some folks love it. I struggle with it.



#3 Raserei

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 08:02 PM

Thanks mwsinclair. Do you have any resources on what an unpublished speculative fiction writer could blog about to begin building a base? I'm at a loss, because when I look up authors, they of course already have work out. 


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#4 mwsinclair

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 08:12 AM

There are myriad authors out there with just as many blogs. The ideas of what you can write about are nearly infinite.

 

They can be spec-fic related, they can be about the trials and travails of an aspiring author, they can be observations on the publishing industry...

 

One way lots of authors try to build a following is to offer stuff -- free courses, for example, free stories that you've written (and don't expect to see published otherwise).

 

There are loads of blogs about creating blogs. (Jeff Goins is a popular blogger and author, and part of his spiel is about how many blogs he started before finally discovering how to develop an audience).

 

My advice is to read other authors' blogs, leave comments. Approach it like you're looking to join a community as you have done here (and welcome!), and learn from their approach -- both what you like about that approach and what doesn't work for you.

 

Blogging used to be discussed more in this site, but you should still be able to find previous discussions. And if you have questions on those things, feel free to comment on threads even if they haven't had a comment in a while. It kinda brings them back into view. There's so much great information on this site that you can find answers to most of your questions when you're starting out.

 

Good luck, and feel free to PM me if you have any other specific questions.



#5 RSMellette

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 03:45 PM

A regular Facebook Live show can be another way to go, but then you're left with the same question of what it should be about. 

 

I've spent years working for a film festival, so when I was blogging, that's what I wrote about. No one seemed to care a ton about what I wrote until we got close to announcing that year's slate - then my hits would go WAY up. They still do, and I haven't written the blog in years. If it translated to more than 10 sales I'd be shocked.

 

As I was saying to an author sitting next to me at Los Angeles Comic Con while we sold books one-at-a-time... nothing works, but you can't do nothing.


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