First the bad news. If you don’t promote your book, people won’t know about it, therefore it won’t sell as well as if you’d promoted it.
Now the good news. The number one thing that will make your book sell is by writing a second book.
However, you do need to make some efforts to tell people about your book. In today’s world you absolutely must have a website. There are very simple free ones you can manage yourself, or you can get a prettier one with a web person to manage it for you.
Facebook, Twitter, My Space, Google+ and all those other social networking sites help too. But remember the whole point of social networking sites is that you have to connect with people. Tell them about your wonderful, brilliant, amazing book. But also tell them about your garden, your cat, and whatever else interests you. Personally, I’d steer clear of photos of my children, or constantly naming them on the web. Many authors call them by an initial, or terms such as “Firstborn”, or “Boychild”.
You do need to watch that too much of your writing time doesn’t get sucked into social networking, but building links with your readers and potential readers is vital.
Guest blogging and blog hops are also good ways to meet readers, and blog hops have the advantage of other people helping you to drive readers to the promotion. Another advantage for shy writers is that you can prepare it all in advance and just have to go back on the day to answer comments, instead of sitting in a chatroom for hours on end generating conversation.
Finally remember that anything posted on the internet is there forever, so be sure to be in your “author” frame of mind when you post. Being rude to readers is something they may never forget, and you may never live down.
Helen is available to line edit and/ or content edit fiction and non-fiction. Rates on application.