How-To Discussion of Promoting and Marketing Novels and Written Works
The following thread started out as a discussion in the 'Post your progress' thread, and covers the controversial topic of authors self-promoting at discussion forums. On the one hand, publishers and agents urge new authors to get their presence and their name (and the name of their books) out there on the World Wide Web...
To spam or not to spam, that is the question...
Some forums, such as this one, have rules against spam however, more importantly, what are the members' views on authors turning up simply to pimp their work?
I'm not allowed to mention the title...
but, if you read my satirical essay, the mistakes with self-promotion become apparent. In my opinion, and I hope I don't get into even more trouble here, there is institutionalized resistance to unknown authors who compete for attention within a diminishing SF/F marketplace made stale by a trend toward instant gratification fueled by the proliferation of video, movies, CDs, new technologies, etc.
The proportion of people who read anything for fun is rapidly declining, unless it's online and interactive. Therein also lay predators -- bullies -- marginally accomplished who want to downgrade self-promotion of creative arts, or even worthwhile causes, as SPAM!
Due to self-interests propadanda, such posts are sometimes treated by conditioned youth the same as ones advertising fake Viagra. Unlike seasoned owners, some internet mods and admins have yet to achieve the wisdom of public service as a marketing strategy. I don't intend this comment as support for capitalistist intellectual exploitation -- it's a matter of sophistication. Internet marketing has not yet evolved to the place where profit and heart strings are tied, like so many traditional companies have accomplished, including ones that are fraudulent.
Get ready for bumps. In my opinion, if you are not bashed on and banned from a few sites, your self-promotion is weak. Without self-promotion, your art, regardless of quality, will be never be recognized by today's authority. I don't care how many "workshops" you attend, traditional routes to art appreciation are dead. So, in my opinion, is proper protocol. Face it. If you've got something worth noticing in any field and have no connections, again in my opinion, it has no chance of large scale appreciation, culturally sad, even by your friends and family, unless you fight the machine.
The real accomplishment is that if you fight and win, that you do not become part of the machine you defeated.
what kinds of self-promotion should a writer provide?
I was replying to the above question and presented a friendly caution. He may end up with a great ms but not have the money to advertise on this or other sites. I can't afford to advertise. I think that he asked a very good question and deserves an encouraging yet frank answer. To invest a great deal of time and emotion into a project, and then be.... I have to get ready to go to work.