A Very Different Episode of Writing Is A Bad Habit: Cashing In Some Chips a.k.a. An Open Request For Insights On Community And Promotion

For the few of you who have followed this blog over the years, you have seen the reviews I have written (almost a hundred now!) and the piles of writing articles and authorial musings I have put to electronic paper.  I hope by now I have established my desire to help out my fellow authors and writers, to try to provide services to help them improve and thrive, and be an over-all stand-up guy.  As this is a Wednesday, I would normally be adding to that pile of work with some fresh insights on writing.  Today, though, as the title indicates, is a very different Writing Is A Bad Habit, because I feel the need to turn the normal purpose of this series on its head.


Monday Musings: The Quest For Sandwiches! a.k.a. Ethical Guerilla Advertising

The proper construction of a walking advertising prop is serious business.  It has to be lightweight yet sturdy, comfortable yet stable, and all of that.  The thing that I’m having to consider the most, though, is the exact nature of the message.

You see, I am a strong proponent of certain ethical boundaries.  My reviews are always scrupulously honest, I always try to keep my word, and all that sappy stuff.  So I find myself wondering just how far I should push my guerilla advertising.

Other authors and vendors have had to pay a fair bit more for the privilege of hawking their goods at the convention.  While you can argue that my pass cost isn’t that much less than an author’s alley spot with far less amenities, that pass was purchased with the implication of being a consumer, not a vendor.  So where should I draw the line?

I’m sure I’ll find an acceptable balance, as I did last year, but if you have any thoughts, feel free to let me know.  I welcome your comments and suggestions!

Until next time, good reading, good writing, and good luck!

Weekend Update: Sandwich Making a.k.a. Guerilla Marketing and You!

Just a quick update from Starving Author LLC headquarters, here in sunny (if cold) Pensacola:

  • I have a client and half (it makes sense to me!) book in the Starving Editor offices, but that leaves plenty more room for your fellow starving authors out there to engage my services!
  • There is a wealth of resources on the Internet for the making of wearable sandwich boards.  Gods bless the information superhighway!
  • Maybe this year I’ll be able to spring like a jaguar and actually GET A TABLE FOR PENSACON! … Seriously, I tried this year, but they sold out in, like, a month, well before I had the cash on hand.
  • If you’re an author in the same position (going to a con but unable to wrangle a table), you can still advance yourself.  Other authors and publishers are usually more than willing to talk shop.  If you make yourself identifiable in some way, you can still meet and engage with readers.  Or you can do what I do: all of the above, plus be a walking advert.  Your mileage may vary!
  • The Songstress Murders is still coming!  Editing is taking a bit of time to wrangle and the cover artist had a surgery to endure.  She’s okay and work is back on track, but it delayed the whole mess.  Still, I think it may be my best book yet, so it should be worth the wait.
  • You’re awesome!  If no one has told you that today, I’m your guy.

I think that about covers it.  Time to get back to the books I intend to review next Friday.  Until next time, good reading, good writing, and good luck!

Monday Musings: A Failure to Communicate a.k.a. My Stumbles in Communities

I’ve heard it said many times that it is vital for a starting author to cultivate their position in the authorial community.  Frequent forums, comment and support blogs, and provide what support you can for other starting authors, those were watchwords.  Some even would take it to the unfortunate (and unethical) extreme of suppressing negative reviews or inflating them into positive reviews.  That, though, is the extreme, and there’s nothing wrong with the rest of it.  In fact, taking our own experiences with the art of writing and giving it to others is a way for all of us to improve our craft.


Why the posts have slowed (IT’S A GOOD REASON!)

Anyone who reads this blog and is a writer will immediately understand the validity of my infrequent updating in the past month, so without further ado: The Muse has struck and struck hard.

As we all know, even professional writing can come in fits and torrents. Sometimes, no matter what, the words just won’t arrange themselves on the page. Other times, the only limit to the speed of your writing are the frailties of the physical world. This past month has been the latter. I have engaged in a hermetic lifestyle where the only things I do outside of writing is basic world upkeep and some small time with my family each day. Everything else has been devoted to my craft.

What that ultimately means is that by week’s end, Indefatigable will be finished, at least in the first draft manuscript. The Tale of the Tape should be wrapped up next week or, at latest, the week after. Looking at my files, I only started serious work on these a month ago so, really, this leaves me a bit dizzy.

However, all this writing is worthless (outside of my own personal satisfaction) if I don’t maintain social media stuff like this blog. As I have said before, I grow more and more understanding of the need for professional promotional services.

I’m about to tuck into the next chapter on my plate. Wish me luck!

P.S. If anyone who reads this and has gone down this same indie author road has any insights on ways to manage self-promotion and advertising, I’d love to hear that insight.