If you read about how Twitter can get you published, you may recall that I hinted at blogging. Well, hold on to your pencils, pens, and keys, because this one can get a bit tricky.
Most authors today have a blog. This is because having an online presence is essential. I repeat, essential.
Because agents and publishers want to know these three things:
Your ability to attract an audience/following
Your publicity potential
Your continued writing skills
All of these apply to your platform because they are letting publishers know that you are marketable/sell-able. Publishers are not just investing into your book—they are investing into you.
I am not saying you have to sell your soul here. But I am saying that a blog can do wonders.
But where do you begin? After all, as I said, you can find most anyone online these days.
How do you stand out? How do you make a unique writing blog? How do you appeal to those that could one day be your book-buying audience?
As always, I’ve got some advice for you.
Know Your Audience
You want to attract people who will, one day, buy that book you’ve written/ you’re writing. You may love to blog about recipes, but are you selling a cookbook? Are you writing for teens? Find a way to incorporate that into your blog. Writing historical fiction or non-fiction? Use facts and images from that era in your blog. Writing self-help? Give advice! If your blog is not attracting the same audience as your readers, publishers might use that as a reason to pass you by. Take this from someone who has personally had that happen—know your audience!
Whether you’re posting once a month, twice a month, once a week, every day—make it consistent. Let your readers know they can depend on you. If you post on Tuesday at 5AM—do so every time you have a post. Regulate your site to see when you have the most traffic and adjust accordingly, but try to post at the same time, every time.
Build a Community
Find a few blogs that have similar pieces of your puzzle. Read, comment, and follow those blogs. Do this until you have a stead community of 5-10 blogs that you are in communication with. They post on your blog, you post on their blog, you like, follow, share, and support each other. This community is so important. You might be able to launch a blog and grab supporters and never have to do much more, but it’s unlikely. You want them to love you, and they want you to love them. So find and build a community to help your marketing even more.
Before long, the blog will work for you.
There are so many blogs out there, good and bad, that it might be intimidating of starting your own. Everyone wants to be different and unique, and with a plethora of sites out there it may seem impossible to stand out. But let me tell you something: you will. Just like your story will fall into the hands of the right agent, editor, and/or publisher—your blog will attract the right readers who will love you because you are you.
Everyone is different, so find your voice and let others hear it. Your book is one way to share the stories building up inside you; your blog is another. Odds are, you won’t regret it.