Fridays with Friends–guestblogger Carole Brown

I am so happy to welcome Carole Brown to my blog. Carole is a fellow ACFWer and also a member of my Ohio group. She is very friendly and full of smiles, and today she has some great information for those of us starting down the marketing road. Come a long with me and enjoy the ride!

I Don’t Wanna Be a Marketer! By Carole Brown

Me, neither, but when I chose a writing career, I signed on unofficially to do all I can to promote my books/my writing career. In this day, it’s an accepted part of being a writer. No longer can we sit back and allow publishers to do it all.

Sure it’s scary. Most writers are introverts. Anytime a writer has to open up their self to others and expose your dreams and hopes and thoughts to the world, it’s risky. We’d rather stay in our shells, write and sell tons of books. But there’s another part—and it’s not very well liked—side of writing. Marketing.

Social media is a must. We’re faced with tons of choices: speaking, book signings, physical and blog tours, Facebook, Shoutlife, My Space, Twitter, blogging. How can we know what’s for us?

By experimenting in small doses.
· Speak to your friends about an aspect of your writing. Don’t try to overload them with information. Pick out some small part of your life as a writer and share it. Decide what you’re knowledgeable about and develop that topic. This could lead you to more and larger engagements. Take advantage of it.
· Social Internet groups. Check out different ones. Find and learn how to negotiate through your choice. Be faithful. Posts don’t have to be long. Be friendly and make as many friends as you can. You can’t post and sit around waiting on everyone to pounce on them. Check out others’ posts. Comment with sincere remarks. Invite others to be your friend, and be theirs. Show you care.
· Get a website. Published or not, start preparing now for when it happens. Take time to prepare one that’s attractive and appealing.
· Blog.
1. Again, prepare a blog that represents your genre, you and your writing. Doesn’t have to be flashy. Just attractive and you.
2. Make a list about your writing.
· Genre (children, historical, sci-fi, romance, mystery?),
· themes throughout your books,
· Any special topics you always touch on?
· What do you want your readers to take away after reading your books?
· How do you hope they inspire others?
· Do you want a specialty blog or a more general one to feel free to use a variety of ideas on it? My definition of a specialty blog: one that specializes in, for example: all interviews and reviews, or one that has mostly posts about their books, characters, etc., or one that offers writing advice.

I consider mine a general one.
1. Sundays, I have a devotional, very short type of worshipful post (for the reader and me).
2. Mondays, I usually post a list of ten things I’m grateful for (an exercise that helps me connect with readers, but also shares a tiny portion of my thoughts and life).
3. On Wednesdays, I offer occasional reviews, but mostly interviews, with lots of giveaways.
4. Fridays, is a fun day. Articles, guest posts, funny tidbits about life, interesting things.
5. Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays are my free days, but I also use them for extra stuff when I’m booked up.
Work with these ideas to create a blog that is YOU!
3. Decide how many posts you want and can do in a week’s time. It’s better to pick too few days as too many that you can’t keep up with.
4. Be faithful. Be disciplined. Sure, once in awhile you may miss a day. That’s okay. We’re human. Don’t belabor the fact. Move on to your next day and pick up your pace again.
5. Comment on others’ blogs. Become a follower of others’ blogs. Encourage, encourage, encourage.

Be patient as you build your platform for a successful writing career. It all takes time, but if you follow these few steps and study other writers’ successes, you’ll eventually find the groove that just fits you and your life.

Happy marketing!

Carole’s bio:
Carole Brown, wife of Dan and mother of two grown sons, lives in Ohio and writes suspense, romantic suspense, and mystery, all a passion with her. Carole’s published four children’s books (learning character traits) that are used in Christian schools and VBS. She is a semi-finalist in the 2011 American Christian Fiction Writer’s Genesis contest, in the Women’s Fiction division. She’s a reviewer with the prestigious Suspense Zone and an experienced blogger with years of blogging under her belt.

She’s received several awards for her poems, and written various magazine articles, served as editor and co-editor of many newsletters, and helped to develop advertising brochures.
She has a Bachelors Degree in Religious Education, an Associate in Computer Software and has completed several courses in fiction writing. Carole is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, Central Ohio Fiction Writers, Circle of Pens (a writing group she founded for mentoring beginning writers) and The Wannabe Writer’s of West Virginia and Ohio.
Learn more about Carole at: www.

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