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Writing Books/Marketing burnout

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Question
Hi Jamie ~

My first book was published this spring by an indie publisher. I knew enough not to expect too much with regard to marketing, but I've gotten less than that. I do have an invaluable ally in a whiz-geek knowledgeable in online marketing who gives me tech/marketing help ~ maintaining the book's website & Facebook page takes a great deal of my time and effort.

While I'm still delighted that my book exists, marketing is arduous and draining. Booking & getting people to show up for reading/signing events is difficult, given that I'm not a big name. I'm using all the contacts I have, networking, etc.

But I'm burning out. What really bothers me is that the burnout is effecting my creativity ... It used to be when I got an idea, I'd immediately start envisioning what I could do with it and would run with the idea. Now, that process gets chopped off at the knees because, at this point, the last thing I want is to go through another marketing adventure. This loss of the inspirational/visioning dynamic truly makes me sad.

I believe in my book, have gotten a number of excellent reviews, and I've always felt it would be the kind of book that would achieve modest success via a slow-build word-of-mouth. I need to have marketing stamina.

Do you have any advice for marketing burnout and/or managing the demands & disappointments of marketing?

Thanks,
   Elizabeth

Answer
Hi Elizabeth,

I'm sorry for the troubles you are experiencing. Usually, traditional publishers will put some effort into the marketing, but certain small presses leave it all to the author. The sad fact is, authors are authors, not marketing experts.
I don't know the complete list of everything you've tried in the way of getting your book known, but there is a lot you can do just utilizing the internet. A lot of services are free or inexpensive, as well. I've known some authors who hold contests and give copies of their books as prizes (some even donated copies to radio stations, who would give the books as prizes - this is great because your name and the title of your book will be announced on the radio). These are just good ways to get your book out there and into the hands of potential readers. You may also want to consider investing some money into the marketing by utilizing marketing and press release services (such as Bookmasters).

Unfortunately, I can't give you much advice on dealing with the disappointment (that's outside my expertise). The best bet is to try to maintain realistic expectations and put an honest effort into your endeavors. Building a platform takes time and word-of-mouth is a slow and sometimes unsuccessful marketing method. I wish you the best of luck!

Regards,
Jamie

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Jamie Darrach

Expertise

I can answer just about any question regarding the composition, editing, and publishing procedures for all forms of literature. I will give aspiring authors ample tips on how to strengthen plot, how make story-lines and characters credible, how to improve visual description and dialogue, and how to make works flow easily and naturally. In addition, I can give writers advice on how to adequately edit and revise their works. I have knowledge of the literary market, and can advise writers in which route would be best for their piece, including offer examples of presses and agents who work with manuscripts in the author's category.

Experience

I have been writing for eleven years, having completed fourteen novels, several short stories, and countless pieces of poetry. I am experienced in multiple genres. I have worked as a copy-editor and critic for aspiring authors. I have researched the literary market from inside-out, and can provide much information to writers who are seeking advice.

Education/Credentials
College for BA in English

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