For memoir writers, there is a huge learning curve in becoming an author both to write AND learn about platform and marketing. Most writers I talk to are trying to balance the need to carve out time to listen to their internal, quiet world of their inner voice and memory to write their memoir, and to switch sides of the brain to learn about themes, the market, comparable books, creating a blog, and then reaching out so the world can learn about their book.
We all can get overwhelmed by all this. All of us at one point or another are taking deep breaths trying to figure out how to juggle the different hats we have to wear, and finding the best ways to learn what we need to know to appear professional and desirable to the public as an author. As Anne Lamott wrote in her book Bird by Bird, we have to do it one step at a time.
The best way to learn what we don’t know is to attend conferences, workshops, and online events where a piece of the subject matter is delivered, and ideally you get an audio or a video to help you learn more later–it can be hard to absorb everything the first time you hear it. It’s good to take notes too, because later they will help you remember and internalize what you have heard.
Who’s the Audience?
Many memoirists stress about the audience for their book early in their writing process–but I tell them to just write the book they need to write, and figure out how to get it published, what tone to use, what to revise, and how to reach their ideal audience after the first draft is done.
However, the day comes when you do need to focus on who is the ideal audience for your book–because that will help you in your revision process.
And then…drum roll…you need to learn how to present yourself as a writing professional and truly learn to reach out to people you don’t know and–gasp–ask for something! You need to ask for endorsements for your book, you will ask for reviews, for bookstore events, for placement in stores other than bookstores perhaps. You will need to round up your network of friends and relatives and other authors. It takes a village to help write a book, and it takes a village to sell your book.
Learn from our “Gutsy” speaker Sonia Marsh
This Friday at our NAMW member teleseminar, we have a terrific guest, Sonia Marsh, who has become an expert at DYI–Do It Yourself marketing. She is going to talk with us about a whole bunch of things we need to know -and I hope you can join us.
Sonia was not a book expert of any kind when she wrote her book From Freeways to Flip Flops, a travel memoir. She created a website called Gutsy Living, where she gathers community to present “gutsy” story contests.
In her blog post at NAMW, she talks about how she learned to promote her book, one event at a time. And she got better and better at it–so good that on September 26, she’s doing huge launch party to present her anthology of other “Gutsy” writers. The event has a keynote speaker, a professional film crew, a panel of speakers–I’m happy to be one of them–and she has done a lot of publicity through social media and press releases.
All of this has come from her passion to reach out with her book in creative ways, to celebrate creativity, writing, books, and her fellow authors. That is how we build the village–each author supporting other authors.
Please join us this for our event:
Topic: You’ve Published a Memoir-Now How Do You Sell It?
Expert: Sonia Marsh
Date: August 23, 2013
Time: 11 AM PDT 12 PM MDT 1 PM CDT 2 PM EDT
Click here if you want to sign up for this membership teleseminar by becoming a member of NAMW. Become a member and receive access to over 130 audios, special articles, free books, and other membership benefits. Members have special access to experts who present the member teleseminars each month.