9 Tips Learned in Marketing Workshop

Via Pixabay
Via Pixabay

As I draw nearer the point at which I hope to have my manuscript in the hands of editors and beta readers, the more nervous I get about various topics: publishing, marketing, sales, book reviews, and the list goes on.

A few weeks ago, to stem the tide of nervousness, I attended a two-hour marketing workshop presented by PDX Writers, a local organization committed to helping writers do their best. The guest speaker was John Sibley Williams, a local writer and literary agent, with years of experience in both areas.

Did it help?

Well, the most important thing I learned is that two hours is too little time to cover all you need to know about marketing and selling your book.

I left the workshop feeling overwhelmed, underequipped, bombarded, discouraged, ready to toss my draft manuscript in the circular file and never look back. Did I mention I also had a headache?

I am not blaming PDX Writers or Mr. Williams for my emotional response to their presentation. It is obvious the hands on the clock moved too quickly.

Despite my spewing above, I did come away with some helpful tips and handouts, not to mention good contacts made:

  • Have a good business plan and strategy;
  • Prepare a budget and maintain a budgetary spreadsheet;
  • Create realistic marketing and branding strategy;
  • Consider methods for earning direct income;
  • Have active presence on social media, including your blog and/or website;
  • Develop local network with libraries and bookstores
  • Gain exposure by a variety of methods (that’s another post!);
  • Think of and incorporate means of saving money;
  • Learn all you can about query letters, self-publishing vs. traditional publishing, agents, editors, press releases, etc.

Like I said, a large amount of material was attempted in this workshop.

However, I now have a conceptual view of what life will be like depending on a number of decisions I need to make about my book in coming weeks and/or months.

If you have published a book, what one thing would you recommend a writer to make his/her priority as they reach the point of finalizing a manuscript? What one thing would you do differently? Please help out by adding your comments below.

Who Is Your Audience? by Patricia Fry

Today it is my pleasure to introduce my guest, Patricia Fry, to you. Patricia is a writer, editorial consultant, and speaker. With over four decades of writing behind, Patricia has written many articles as well as 45 books. Her experience in publishing and editing makes her an ideal consultant for projects of many kinds. More about Patricia in her bio below.
Join me in welcoming Patricia Fry to the blog.

Patricia Fry, writer and editor

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Before putting pen to paper, I always recommend that hopeful authors study the publishing industry before getting involved in this highly competitive business. Most new authors consider publishing an extension of their writing—something they can ease into once the writing is done. But while writing is a craft, publishing is a serious, complex business. Before ever entering into it, an author needs to know something about his or her publishing options, the possible ramifications of their choices and their responsibility as a published author. Nearly 78% of all authors fail—that is, they sell fewer than 100 books total. And the two main reasons are, they do not fully understand their publishing options and, either by choice or ignorance, they do not put enough effort into promoting their books.

By getting your stories published, you are creating a following – by landing an article writing assignment in appropriate magazines and newsletters you will get attention from your target audience. This is building the authors’ Continue reading “Who Is Your Audience? by Patricia Fry”