Archive for April 30th, 2010

You’ve spent months pouring your heart and soul into a story, creating characters you hope people will fall in love with, hate and then fall back in love with. Characters that you know better than your children, heck they become your children. You agonize over a plot that will hold a readers interest, sweat out a few twists and turns and then create that happily ever after ending that the majority of readers die for.

Now, you sit down and type your fingers to the bone fighting with keys on your keyboard that simply won’t cooperate because they’re falling off. Over caffeinate your body so you keep on that grand, adrenaline pumping roll that you hope doesn’t dry up. Forget that your family needs to eat at least once a day because you’re so immersed in your fantasy world and bingo, you type the end.

The cursor sits winking at you. You wipe the sweat from your brow and scream at the top of your lungs because you’ve done it. You’ve completed a story that you know, well, pray people will want to read. Said story is accepted by a publisher. You sign that elusive contract that you’ve dreamed about, look at the gorgeous cover art someone has worked so very hard on and wait for the day your master piece releases.
Okay, now what. Now you have to find a way to promote this wonderful story. Push it out into the masses, shove it in their faces so they see that beautiful cover read your name and purchase this fictional work of art you’ve poured your soul into. (Face plant on desk.) How exactly do you do this?

This is where my nightmare begins. Let’s take a deep breath, focus the mind and think. I’d like someone to read my book and give me a review, let me know if my hard work turned out as well as I hoped. So, I hit review sites. Oh, look. I can advertise my book on their sites and holy cow, it isn’t that expensive and they’ll link my review with my ad. Yay! I’m promoting myself.

Is this enough? Should I do more? Of course I should, but what? Networking. Everyone says you need to network. What the heck is networking? I’m just not up on this internet lingo. Two, three days of hitting my publisher’s author’s chat loop and I find out I can network on places like Facebook and MySpace. How hard can that be? Actually, it’s pretty easy. Now I’m linked to wonderful people that read and write and have common interests and want me to listen to their music or buy their art or support their group. Oh my. This isn’t what I thought it would be. Still, I like it. It is a great way to get my name and work out there.
Not enough though. I need to do more. The chat loops say I need to have a blog. Blog, the word sounds like I have something stuck in my throat and I’m hacking it up. Ick. Never one to question those that know what they’re doing, I set up a blog. Now I spend hours reading as many blogs as I can to see what I’m supposed to write in this blog. Turns out, I can write anything I want because it’s mine. Yay me!
Blog, done. Now what? I have no idea. There has to be someone out there who knows how to help me promote my book. There just has to be. Sure, I could buy expensive ads in magazines but my budget simply won’t allow it. I could take out ads in newspapers but do those really work? Do I want to spend my time and money on a resource that I’m not sure about? Nope, not me.

So, I hit the search engines and start looking for someone out there who knows the ins and outs of the internet, has connections and experience. Easier said than done. I feel like I’m rooting through the proverbial haystack for that golden needle that will prick my finger and cure me of all my promotion ills.
Who knew self promotion would be so difficult? Not little ole naive me. Guess I learned a thing or two. But, then it happened. The clouds parted on my dismal self promoting life and the warm, golden rays of sunlight bathed me in salvation. There are people out there who know how to help promote me and my book. Happy Days!

Seriously, I’m not good at promoting myself and I have great respect for those that walked before me and learned the ropes the hard way. I bow to your tenacity and pray for one tenth of your courage. Picture the publishing industry as a pond jam packed with awesome writers looking for a way to put their book out in front of all the millions of others. If you don’t have support behind you, you’ll get lost in the crowd.
I know plenty of authors that are doing a wonderful job promoting themselves. I simply don’t have the time or resources they have. So, I need help from places like Pump Up Your Book and Author Island. They are great resources for me. Organizing chats, putting me in touch with popular blogs, helping me do interviews; it all helps me move toward my dream.

Promotion will always be difficult for me. I’d much rather spend my time writing. It’s my passion. I’m just thankful there are people out there willing to share their knowledge and experience to help me on my way. Happy Reading!

Robin Leigh Miller knows a little about finding romance in odd places. A retired dirt track racecar driver, she found love and adventure on the track. After three months of dating a fellow driver, he proposed and seven months later, they married. Now she gets her adrenaline rush from creating spunky, determined kick ass women that don’t let anything get in their way. Mix in her passion for paranormal, action and adventure and you have some unique thrilling stories. Enter a world where anything can happen and hold on tight. It’s a bumpy ride but worth the trip as you watch her characters plow through what life throws at them and come out the other side more powerful and of course in love. You can visit her website at www.robinleighmiller.com.

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