I am a fairly new author. My first novel hit the shelves back in February and book two will come out in 2 short weeks. I also have a few short stories and two novellas that have already hit. Even with that I don't have a huge body of work to draw readers in.
So when I have a new book about to be dropped into the world I still have that need to get the word out. I need people to know that the newest James R. Tuck story is available and they need to buy it.
I have found that the best thing for this is a two-pronged attack.
One- Book Bloggers.
Now I LOVE book bloggers. I read book blogs. I am a bibliophile. (James, how many books have you bought in the last 48 hours? Ummmmm, 8) So when you give me a blog written by someone who loves books too then I am hooked like a mackerel and will spend a ton of time enjoying their opinions. That's as a reader.
As a writer I also see how important book bloggers are for my career. They are the CNN and FOX News of the publishing world. They get the word to the people. I mean really, if you are a reader and not an author do you read Kirkus or Publishers Weekly or any of the other publications that the industry cares about? Normally, no you don't. But I bet you have a favorite book blog you check out. Even if it's a weird, conglomerate blog like Goodreads it's still a book blog. That's because, like Jeffe said yesterday, we are all interconnected and we are all hand selling books now. We like to hear about new books from someone who loves books, not from a cold dispassionate news source. We want that person who is telling us about a new author, a new series, a new book to be trustworthy because of their love for stories.
This is why I will work my ass off for a book blog. If a book blog asks me for an interview, a guest review, a guest post I will kill myself on an overdose of caffeine to make it happen. I appreciate what they do, almost always without pay and never enough thanks from the publishing "industry".
Being a guest at conventions is one of the major highlights to being a published author. It's a lot of work, but it is a lot of FUN work. I love it. I am a social person, not shy, and really, really enjoy being around other authors and most of all, fans of books. Conventions are where I get to meet and mingle with the folks I write for. And the people I write for, they love books just like I do, so it's not a blah-blah lovefest for my writing, it's a group of like minded, interesting people in a group dynamic that is energizing as hell.
People love to meet authors, especially if they are real. I have sold a ton of books just by being on panels and doing my damnedest to entertain the folks there. I also know that at a convention I am there for the readers. I am always willing to talk about anything they want, not just my books.
So those are the ways I get the word out about my books. They are the two most effective ways I have found and, coincidentally, the two avenues I enjoy working the most.
Keep checking back all week though, I can't wait to see what killer advice comes out on this topic from my awesome co-bloggers here!