Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Internet and Writing

The pie special today is cherry, with a side of vanilla bean ice cream. Let me know when you're ready to order!

In the meantime, let's talk about the Internet and writing.
There are so many things the Internet is good for when you're a write. We've talked about the research possibilities and all the other uses, so I want to talk to you about marketing via the Internet. I've learned a lot about marketing from helping friends learn how to set up webpages, open a MySpace page, learn about Facebook or Google or any of the ten million other networking possibilities out there. The Internet is a perfect place to network not only with other writers, but the readers you want to be selling your writing to.

So you figure, hey, I'm not published yet, so I don't really need a webpage, right? Wrong! Agent Kristen Nelson says, "If you are a published author (or about to be), you need a website." http://pubrants.blogspot.com/search/label/websites Read her blog here.

And a website is only the beginning. You need to be where the readers are, and part of making that happen is doing things like blogging (hello, that's why we're here), having a presence on social sites like MySpace (www.myspace.com), where you can set up a page about your writing, post blogs, excerpts from your current work, pretty much anything you want the world (hence, the readers) to know about you. One caveat: Take care what you say - this is not the place to whine about agents and editors (they have LONG memories) or other inappropriate things. Remember, what's on the web STAYS on the web pretty much forever, so once it's out there, it's really hard to take it back.

When you're on a social website like MySpace (there's several others, I'm just that as an example), you can search for other authors to friend, you can find readers, writing groups, readers groups, reviewers, agents, editors and lots of other interesting people (movie people, music groups). There are a lot of ways to connect and network with people who can help you build buzz for your writing projects. You can show them how well you write, how interesting you are and why they would want to know you.

So while the Internet is a wonderful research tool and has many innovative uses, the most important thing you can do as a writer is get your name out there for the readers to find, whether you're already published, almost published or in the process. You'll be amazed what good buzz can do for you.

And by the way, if you read farther in Pub Rants by Kristen Nelson, she's talking about the paranormal and what she's learning from the editors in New York about what they do and don't want to see right now. I think it's especially pertinent to us and our readers, so go check it out!

And just holler when you're ready for that pie.

Jeannie

4 comments:

  1. Having a website is a good tool to market your books. As for MySpace and a blog, both are time consuming things. If you don't blog, people won't blog you back. So don't go into them thinking "if you build them, they'll come." That's not true. Eventually people stop dropping by your MySpace page and blog if you don't drop by theirs often. Like I said, it takes a lot of effort and time to keep a blog and MySpace webpage alive and kicking. Most times it interferes with your writing time. That is if you have a full-time job like I do. Heh!

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  2. This is important information, and as you said even unpublished writers have to be aware of these things as they begin to make others aware of their names.

    debralee

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  3. I've had a web site for a few years now, but I'm bad about keeping it updated. *hangs head in shame* It's more of a "it's ready to go when I'm published" thing right now. I'm just now dipping into the blog pool with this blog. (And it's been fun!) I still don't get the allure of MySpace. Guess because I never go there. Sounds like I'll have to explore those waters someday.

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  4. Thanks for the informative links. I appreciate learning more about this business end of writing.

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