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Friday, April 30, 2010

Dirty Little Writer Secret

Writers, can I tell you a secret?

You don't use your assets enough.

I edit the newsletter for OWW, Online Writing Workshop for Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, and I can tell you it's like pulling teeth to get some authors to pony up their information.

If the author is an OWW member, they get special privileges and can merit a spot on my interview roster if they happen to score a contract with one of the Big 6 publishers. I even do one better and try to get them interviewed as close to their release date as possible.

Oy! The things I do for authors.

Yet they do so little for themselves. If you're an OWW member, tell me you've made a sale. If you have an agent or editor, ask them if I can interview them--and earn a mention a second time by them.

Even if you're not a member there is a way to get noticed. Do you have any big name author friends, agents or editors hiding on your hard drive? Introduce them to me. That is the fastest way for YOU to get your name in the newsletter and a link back to your web site.

OWW is only one venue. There are thousands out there for you to mine. Big forums and newsletters have a lot of subscribers. And that means more eyes on your career.

Networking, people! Whether you realize it or not, you have people who can help you spread your name around. It doesn't always have to be about your work, but it can lead that way if you know just the right names to drop.

In April, I interviewed agent, Nathan Bransford. For May (as in tomorrow) I interviewed the very awesome Lois McMaster Bujold. Find Bujold's interview here.

Make yourself visible and don't just do it when you have a book to pitch. Saying smart things all throughout the year on sites that recognize and promote your genre(s) is the best way to keep your name in circulation.
I'll discuss networking with groups in greater length on a future post.

What are you doing to network in May?


Coyote Con starts tomorrow. It is a 31 day digital author conference and I'm on the blog line up. This conference is absolutely free, but you must register in order to enter the conference rooms.

That seemed like the perfect segue to welcome Killer Campaigns back. Starting May 14th, the Killer is back. This time we're going to expand the concept and discuss not only marketing ideas but also business tactics as it applies to publishing.

I'm always looking for topics on the business of publishing. If you have a question or a topic you want discussed, drop me a line and earn a link back to your blog. (That's called networking.) I'll do my research and show you what I uncovered along the way.


Joanne said...

Great networking advice, Maria. And it seems it's never too early to begin. When we start thinking of the connections, direct and roundabout, they are endless. I'm looking forward to reading more on your future post.

Maria Zannini said...

Thanks, Joanne. It is never too early to form strong relationships with the people who read and write about us.

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

Trust me, when I make my next sale, I'll announce it on OWW, BroadUniverse, Facebook, my blog, and anywhere else I can think of!

(BroadUniverse is also a great resource for promoting women authors of fantasy, SF, and horror. They do readings at cons, sell books, compile lists of member's books, and more.)

As for promoting myself in May, I'm going to WisCon Memorial Day weekend as I always do. I'm still waiting to hear if I'll be part of programming. (I volunteered to moderate a panel.) Depending on my schedule, maybe I can volunteer at the con too.

Maria Zannini said...

Good for you on WisCon! Volunteering at cons has always been one of my favorite ways to meet new people.

And so right about BroadUniverse.

Suzanne McLeod said...

Great advice, Maria :-)

Barbara Ann Wright said...

I'll definitely keep this in mind.

Maria Zannini said...

Suzanne: Do let me know when The Bitter Seed of Magic comes out so I can give it a proper welcome.

Maria Zannini said...

Barbara: Commenting and linking are (imo) the best and easiest ways to network. Not always the most efficient time-wise, but you definitely get some value out of it.

Sherri said...

I just sat down yesterday and mapped out my month for Coyote's going to be fun. I see a lot of weekends locking myself away in my bedroom to follow the events! I'm also trying the writing challenge Joely Sue Burkhart put together.

How's this for some name dropping, Maria? Author Kait Nolan will be stopping by my blog on May 25th.

Sherri said...

Oh and yay for the Killer posts!!

Maria Zannini said...

Sherri: Links, woman! You must add links. LOL!

Seriously, though. Search engines will populate searches with your intended more readily when you use first and last names with links.

Search spiders are hungry for information.

Sherri said...

LOL, Maria

Marian said...

I have another guest blog scheduled to wrap up my thirty days of promotion. Didn't manage to promote every day, alas, but will try to do better next time.

Maria Zannini said...

Sherri: You left out poor Kait Nolan's link. Bad Sherri, bad girl.

Maria Zannini said...

Marian: You did great! And your posts were so informative.

Well done!

Sherri said...

Hey, I'm new to all this stuff...

Kait Nolan's debut novella is Forsaken by Shadow:

She'll be at my blog:
on May 25th.

Teacher, is that better?

Maria Zannini said...


Go to the head of the class.