Marketing: The Bane of Every Writer’s Existence

Guest post by Michelle Griep

I know a lot of authors. Big names. Small names. Those in-between. And you want to know what they all have in common? Well, besides loving coffee and geeking out at bookstores, that is. Every writer I know has a deep down fear that they all share …

Marketing.

That’s right. Authors big and small all break out in hives at the thought of marketing. There are lots of reasons why, of course. It’s time consuming. They’re not sure what to do, where to market. And most authors truly are starving artists without a big bankroll to fund a marketing budget. But I suspect those are just cover-up excuses. That there’s something more at play here with the deep angst about marketing.

I think the real reason authors hate marketing is because writers are generally very private little mammals. Tooting our own horn does not come naturally. I mean, think about it. What kind of person chooses to squirrel himself away alone in a room for hours upon hours on end?

An introvert, that’s what.

But the ugly truth is that in today’s world, like it or not, every author has to be a marketer. Writers must hold hands with the marketing realm if they want their books to be successful. And who doesn’t want that? There are a few tricks, though, even for the most timid of writers who need to get their book out there in front of readers’ faces, and one of my favorite ways is to team up with other authors.

Check out the other books on the market in your genre and then be bold—go ahead and send out an email to those writers and ask if they want to team up to do a giveaway. You’ll get more bang for your buck (so to speak) if you’re all promoting the same contest than if you were to try to go it on your own.

But that’s just one little idea. Recently I joined in with 9 other authors to put together a how-to book on writing, and one of the chapters is all about marketing. For more tips on how you can up your game in the marketing field, check out Writing From the Trenches: Tips & Techniques From Ten Award-Winning Authors. Here’s a blurb:

TEN-HUT! Gear up for your writing with tried-and-true tips from the trenches. Ten award-winning authors share invaluable tips and secrets they’ve gleaned the hard way, offering a broad range of insights and opinions on the best way to tackle subjects such as the following:

Plotting Techniques
Research
Characterization
Villains We Love to Hate
Dynamic Dialogue
Sigh-Worthy Heroes
The Right Heroine for the Job
Hooking Your Reader in the First Chapter
Scene Endings to Lead Your Readers On
Creating a Movie Set
Making your Readers Cry
Deep POV
Copyediting your Manuscript
Indie Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing
Marketing for Those Who Hate Marketing

At last … a writer’s tool that provides the experience and expertise of ten authors who’ve been on the front lines of publishing and lived to teach about it: Connie Almony, Lynnette Bonner, Hallee Bridgeman, Louise Gouge, Michelle Griep, Julie Lessman, Elizabeth Ludwig, Ane Mulligan, MaryLu Tyndall, and Erica Vetsch.

So, what about you? What’s one of your favorite ways to market? Share in the comments.

Click to Tweet: “…the ugly truth is that in today’s world, like it or not, every author has to be a marketer.”  Multi-published author, Michelle Griep, shares one of her ideas today via @InspiredPrompt. #MarketingStrategy


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Michelle Griep

Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She is the author of historical romances: A Tale of Two Hearts, The Captured Bride, The Innkeeper’s Daughter, 12 Days at Bleakly Manor, The Captive Heart, Brentwood’s Ward, A Heart Deceived, and Gallimore, but also leaped the historical fence into the realm of contemporary with the zany romantic mystery Out of the Frying Pan. If you’d like to keep up with her escapades, find her at www.michellegriep.com or stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.

Closing Comments on Indie Publishing

August is at an end. Can you believe it? Looking back over the month, we’ve shared our stories, interviews, comments, and suggestions about Indie publishing. If you’ve read our posts this month, tell me, what stands out to you? What helped you most? Inspired you?


To wrap up the month, we’d like to hear from you—our readers. Share a short comment about your own “Indie” journey, tell us what you liked best from our posts, or if you still have questions, ask us. If we don’t know the answer, we’ll find out for you.

Our greatest desire is to be of help to you along your writing journey. Be encouraged to prayerfully consider your next steps. Your dreams are important, so don’t rush it, and don’t cut too many corners.
Writing Prompt: Just for Fun – Write a haiku about the above photo. Don’t know how? Here’s a helpful post from Creative Writing Now: How to Write a Haiku

Throughout the month of September, we’re going to talk about “Working with the Industry.” I hope you’ll join us.

Click to Tweet:  To Indie publish or not? Your dreams are important, so don’t rush it, and don’t cut too many corners from Betty Owens – @batowens via @InspiredPrompt #IndieAuthors #SelfPub

Laura V. Hilton – Playing with Fire

Welcome back to Inspired Prompt, Laura!

Do you have any interesting writing rituals?  

Laura: I’m honestly not sure what you mean by rituals. I sit down in my chair, turn the computer on, critique someone else’s chapter, edit what I wrote the day before, then start writing. No music playing unless my daughter is listening to Pandora without earphones.

What is the book about? 

Laura: Arie Zimmerman has been in love with Noah Behr from almost the moment they met, but after a devastating wildfire destroys the community, everything changes. Noah questions how a loving Gott could allow such things to happen. As Arie and her family struggle to rebuild their home and lives, Noah escapes to California to fight another off-season wildfire—and maybe find Gott in the process.

When Noah returns, he promises Arie the prize money if she will help him with a chili cook-off to fund the fire department. Of course, in order to spend more time with the girl he loves, he’s also willing to pitch in unloading the new furniture and animals her daed bought at an auction. He’ll even help Arie slice and dice vegetables if he can taste test the recipes.

More than just the kitchen heats up as they spend time together. But will Noah find a still missing Gott in the process and discover there’s more to life than what he initially believed?

Thanks, Laura. What is your favorite part of the book?

Laura: When Noah tried to help Arie by chopping vegetables for the chili he got more than he bargained for.

Intriguing! So, is there a message in your book you hope readers will grasp? 

Laura: The one thing I always hope my readers “get” from my novels is God is. He does. He will.

That’s a great message for all of us to remember. Thanks for visiting Inspired Prompt and sharing more about your latest release.

Click to Tweet: Homeschooling mom and award-winning author, Laura V. Hilton is our guest today at Inspired Prompt. #AmishFiction #Romance


About the author–

Laura V. Hilton is an award-winning, sought-after author with over twenty Amish, contemporary, and historical romances. When she’s not writing, she reviews books for her blogs, and writes devotionals for blog posts for Seriously Write.

Laura and her pastor-husband have five children and a hyper dog named Skye. They currently live in Arkansas. One son is in the U.S. Coast Guard. She is a pastor’s wife, and homeschools her two youngest children.

When she’s not writing, Laura enjoys reading, and visiting lighthouses and waterfalls. Her favorite season is winter, her favorite holiday is Christmas.

About the book–

Plain Everyday Heroes: Playing with Fire by Laura V. Hilton 

Arie Zimmerman has been in love with Noah Behr from almost the moment they met, but after a devastating wildfire destroys the community, everything changes. Noah questions how a loving Gott could allow such things to happen. As Arie and her family struggle to rebuild their home and lives, Noah escapes to California to fight another off-season wildfire—and maybe find Gott in the process.

When Noah returns, he promises Arie the prize money if she will help him with a chili cook-off to fund the fire department. Of course, in order to spend more time with the girl he loves, he’s also willing to pitch in unloading the new furniture and animals her daed bought at an auction. He’ll even help Arie slice and dice vegetables if he can taste test the recipes.

More than just the kitchen heats up as they spend time together. But will Noah find a still missing Gott in the process and discover there’s more to life than what he initially believed?

Where can readers find you online?

http://www.amazon.com/Laura-V.-Hilton/e/B004IRSM5Q 

visit my blogs: http://lighthouse-academy.blogspot.com/   

Twitter: @Laura_V_Hilton

Facebook

 Pinterest

Purchase my books:

Amazon.com 

CBD

Barnes and Noble

 

My Amazing Indie Writer Journey

by Lisa Prysock           

Greetings friends!  I’m writing to you from my writing office in Kentucky—the land of horses, four-board fences, and many wonderful rural communities.  We’re blessed with the occasional farm and the splendor of bluegrass, violets, and wildflowers dotting our green lawns.

The Inspired Prompt crew invited me to write a guest blog post to inspire you to what we writers love: writing!  Particularly, being an Indie Writer.  I’ll try to share a few thoughts about being an Indie Writer to spur you on.

I have to be honest.  I was an Indie Writer before I even knew what “Indie” meant.  Don’t laugh, but I thought it was a reference to “Indiana Jones” and Harrison Ford.  It’s okay, you can laugh.  I thought we Christian Indie Authors were on an adventure to share the Word of God through our writing as we sort of wildly took over the writing scene, kind of like Indiana Jones and his pursuit of the Holy.  Believe me, it has been a completely fun and almost comical adventure for me at times.  Imagine my surprise to find out it simply meant “Independent.”  Well, that was definitely true!

It’s definitely a learning process.  I’ve felt myself go through about three major learning curves and each one has been amazing.  It’s also an incredible, amazing journey.  I recommend approaching it with joy and patience.  Settle in for the ride and let God lead where you’re meant to go and reach who you’re meant to reach.

Writers' Resolutions for 2017 by Karen JurgensDon’t be afraid to make mistakes—and when you do make them—don’t let them define you.  Keep going.  Try different things to see what works.  Aim high, do your best, and don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself along the way.  I try to include as much humor as possible in my novels.  Life is hard enough.  Readers expect us to share the truth in a creative way, and lighthearted novels can be so enjoyable.  So do it well.  Give it your very best.  I can honestly say, I’ve given it my very best with each book.

Surround yourself with as many other Christian authors as you can and ask as many questions as possible. You’ll learn a lot by joining a few Christian writing groups. I try to take notes and listen to each author.  They all have so many amazing things to share and you know, it’s true:  iron sharpens iron.

It’s a tremendously rewarding journey, but it will take your all to do it well. You’ll need all the help and prayer you can encounter along the way. There are long nights, absolutely loads of hard work, and many obstacles. However, I’ve noticed the Lord opening the right doors, training me, teaching me, guiding me, continuously equipping and surrounding me with support and a fresh flow of ideas through each stage of my writing journey. Psalm 45 was a huge source of writing inspiration for me.

Today, I’m nearing publication of my fourteenth novel. I’ve written both historical and contemporary romance novels, and a devotional.  There’s still so much for me to learn, but I’ve truly enjoyed each moment in the process. Most of all, when readers write back and tell me they’ve experienced healing such as loss recovery or being set free from something through my writing, then I know I’m doing exactly what the Lord called me to do.  These experiences bless me so much I can barely contain my joy.  I highly recommend it!

Writing Prompt: (Insert your character’s name here) carefully and lovingly packed her two trunks with each of the items she’d need to begin her new life across the Atlantic Ocean with her beloved.  (Mention some of the items she’s packing in each trunk, a little about her beloved, and something about her destination and current location.)

Click to Tweet: My Amazing Indie Writer Journey by @LPrysock via @InspiredPrompt Don’t be afraid to make mistakes—and when you do make them—don’t let them define you. #amwriting #indieauthor


Readers! Lisa is giving away a paperback edition of Annabelle (upon release) for leaving a comment.  [U.S. Addresses only, please] Estimated release date is August 17th.

Annabelle is book 2 in the Brides of Grace Hill Series.  She flees Edinburgh, Scotland from a grandmother with an evil tongue who has beaten her down verbally and emotionally.  Tall and plain, she doesn’t think she has much of a future, much less the chance to have a family and husband of her own.  She writes to her Aunt Millie in Kentucky who is up to a little matchmaking again and subsequently, receives a letter with an offer of marriage from an American with Scottish roots.  He’s residing in Kentucky during the Antebellum Era.  The offer has several conditions, including a perilous journey along the Oregon Trail to begin a new life in the Willamette Valley region of Oregon along the Pacific coast.  Things seem to be going well with her plans, until she disembarks from a riverboat on the Ohio River at Louisville, Kentucky to discover her trunks containing her sole possessions from Scotland have somehow been lost.


Lisa M. Prysock is an award-winning, bestselling, Christian and inspirational author of more than 13 novels.  She was born in Minnesota; raised in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Ohio as a child; and as an adult, has lived in Virginia, Tennessee, Texas, Ohio again, and Florida, before settling in beautiful, rural Kentucky near many horse farms in the countryside bordering Louisville.  She and her husband of more than 20 years chose to make their home in Kentucky where the rich heritage, scenic area, local culture and history, along with her faith, are a constant source of inspiration for many of Lisa’s books.  Together, they have five children, grown.

Lisa writes in the genres of both Historical Christian Romance and Contemporary Christian Romance novels, including a multi-author, Contemporary Western Christian Romance series, “Whispers in Wyoming” with Danni Roan, Kari Trumbo, and Rachel Skatvold.  She is also the author of a devotional.  She enjoys sharing her faith through her writing.

She has many interests, but a few of these include gardening, cooking, sketching, arts and crafts, sewing, crochet, cross stitch, scrapbooking, reading, swimming, biking, and walking.  She loves dollhouses, cats, horses, butterflies, hats, boots, flip-flops, espadrilles, chocolate, coffee, tea, chocolate, the colors peach and purple, and everything old-fashioned.  She adopted the slogan of “The Old-Fashioned Everything Girl” because of her love for classic, traditional, and old-fashioned everything.  When she isn’t writing, she can sometimes be found teaching herself piano and violin, but humorously finds the process “a bit slow and painful.”  A few of her favorite authors include Jane Austen, Lucy Maude Montgomery, Louisa May Alcott, and Laura Ingalls Wilder.  You’ll find “food, fashion, fun, and faith” in Lisa’s novels.

She continues the joy and adventure of sharing her faith through her writing journey as a member of ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) and LCW (Louisville Christian Writers).  Lisa’s books are clean and wholesome, inspirational, and family oriented.  She gives a generous portion of the proceeds to missions.

You can find out more about this author at www.LisaPrysock.com where you’ll find free recipes, devotionals, author video interviews and book trailers, giveaways, blog posts, and much more, including an invitation to sign up for her free newsletter.

Links to Connect with Lisa:

https://www.facebook.com/LisaMPrysock

https://twitter.com/LPrysock

www.LisaPrysock.com  

https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00J6MBC64

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/lisa-m-prysock