Buy my bookLet’s face it, if you’re an indie author you’ve got a long, upward battle ahead of you each time you come out with a new book. That battle is the marketing and promotional battle to publicize and promote your book.

Please buy my book or I’ll end up in a van down by the river.

If you’ve been around Facebook for a while and are a writer or have a friend who is, you might have seen this posted. It’s funny. It’s cute. And as much as I admire the comic genius of the late Chris Farley, it’s a painful reminder of what all of us authors are up against when we publish. We want people to buy our books. We want people to leave reviews. We want people to tell their friends, family members, hairdressers, mechanics, clients, patients, and clergy about this amazing and wonderful book by ________________.

So, how do we self-promote effectively?

Please shut-up: Why self-promotion as an author doesn’t work.

I came across this article today and I have to admit the author makes some valid points about how some social media platforms don’t live up to the promotional expectations we might have as authors. A lot of authors bemoan the limitations of Facebook and Twitter, but that’s what you get for a free platform. I use Facebook a lot to talk about my books, but also to talk about other authors and books the same way that I would strike up a conversation with a friend and talk about a book that I am reading or have read. People will “like” it that you have a new book out or published another short story, but that doesn’t mean that person is going to buy your book or read your story, the same way that telling that person face-to-face about them. For myself, that “like” is sometimes simply a “nod” and a, “Oh, that’s nice response.”

Still, we all hope that it will work. We hope that someone will buy our books and like them so much that they will spread the word. It happens. Maybe not as much as we would like, but it still happens.

It’s tough these days promoting our books. But we still march on.

By the way, have your checked out my latest, The Panama Affair?

Just kidding. No, really. I don’t want to end up in a van down by the river.