A lot of you have been asking about website marketing that has to do with building an author related career on the internet. Many of you are struggling to make a living with your passion, creative writing. Many of you write part time and hold down a second job to pay most of the bills. We all realize the internet is the biggest market place for new writers of all kinds to make an impression and offline is where the big bucks dwell. You have to play the game if you ever want to win. There is a definite need for quality writers of every genre online. There are also tons of people who want you to write for free! But online is where you should start. Prove yourself, build a following then approach the off line literary moguls. Once you have a readership they’ll welcome you with open arms!
Online and offline, the writing world is full of unscrupulous characters so one has to be careful. Quite frankly, I never was very careful. I got burned plenty of times and I’m still being plagiarized all over the net, especially by the article spinner crowd. I guess I should feel flattered that they deem my text worthy of copying. My attitude always was, I just want to be read. I don’t care much about copy writing everything I type, but that is just me. I understand completely the feelings of worry and helplessness when a young writer sends out query letters or emails a script. Will someone steel your idea and not give you any credit? Sure, it happened to me and it probably has happened to most professional writers of any quantity of work. The only thing I can say to console you is that the people who copy and steel make a quick score but they can’t put out the quality of work as the real deals can time and time again.
For real creative writers, there is never enough time in the day to write what you want to write, to plot out your next piece, to rewrite just one more time. I have beginnings of stories that have been lying around for years that I can’t get back to finish. One has to prioritize. There will be stories in your mind that you never get to pen. For years, I’ve been hoping to find time to write a mystery based around a rock and roll band. Now, don’t steal my idea! But truthfully, I don’t mind sharing that idea because there is plenty of room for a few rock and roll mysteries on the book shelves today. The point is, when you submit your work to an editor or literary agent they sometimes agree with you that your idea is terrific but feel your name doesn’t have the clout to make them money. They turn you down, reject your book then tell their star author about the idea they came up with…your idea! Most of the time you won’t even find out your idea was stolen. This is the industry you’ve chosen to dabble in. Take solace in the fact that there are plenty of other industries just as shady!
So, how does a creative writer protect one’s self and their work while they wait to be discovered? My strategy, and it may not be the best strategy, has always been to keep doing what you do best. Write! Keep getting better and better at writing. Keep sending more and more work out there. Publish when and where you can regardless of the pay! Even if someone wants something for free. I wouldn’t spend too much time on a freebee unless it was for a good charitable cause but I wouldn’t turn down anyone who is willing to publish me. Consider the publicity and promotional worth of everything you publish more important than the actual pay you get. I know what it is like to yearn for a time when you will be finally able to quit that corny day job and write full time. But, you have to build your credibility in order to catch the eye of a webmaster paying top dollar per word. He wants the best writing on a subject period and the cold hard facts are these players would rather pay tons of money to steal a writer away from one of their competitors than take a chance on an unknown.
So, how do we get that good writing job, land that big contract, sell our first of many novels? Well, you are a writer, so you should use your strength, writing, to get people’s attention. Isn’t that why you write? You don’t write stuff then put it in a box so no one can see it. You want to be a ‘Paper Back Writer’ for the fame and recognition just like in the Beatles song. So let’s write and then let’s make sure everyone everywhere reads us! In this day and age the best medium to accomplish fame and then fortune is the internet. Now, most of you have been avoiding learning the ropes of internet marketing. I get it, you just want to write, and you aren’t a salesman! This attitude means you write an article that is great, post it on the web but no one knows it is there so only a few people read it. A competing writer writes and posts a similar article that isn’t nearly as well thought out or researched as yours but they know SEO, search engine optimization and SEM, search engine marketing and they understand social media so everyone reads their article. People tweet about your competitor’s article and re-post it on Facebook then your competitor gets the credit from all that and everyone hails him with praise. Eventually someone mentions your competitor’s name to a literary agent who signs him and all you have to say for yourself is “But I’m a much better writer than he is!”
Any writing career in 2013 and beyond means learning and knowing the internet. The more you know the better you will fare! Even if you sell all your writing offline, you will do much better if you market and promote yourself and your work online too! Getting a writing job offline is still the coveted goal. Writing hard and soft cover books still pay more and are more prestigious than downloads online due to the reputation that online books and online authors have since many people feel, anyone can publish a book himself online. And, since the reality is that many people do publish their own books online and plenty of them are subpar, the good writers suffer the consequences. Still you can’t fight a losing battle. If you want to be a writer today, you must promote yourself online. You need a website showing off your accomplishments and telling people where they can find all your work to read more and more. To get higher pay for your writing you must show you have a following. It’s no longer good enough to just submit your work. You have to add your bio and state how many followers you have on Facebook and Twitter because many editors, down want to be bothered.
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Stay tune for more authors and writer advice on how to build your online presence, self-promote and gain tons of creative writing readers and loyal fans!