darkemeralds: Jared Padalecki in Regency attire (Restraint Tristan)
[personal profile] darkemeralds
Beta readers are coming back with very few notes on Restraint. The rewritten story works for them. I think it really is finished. Seth Godin (whom I had the pleasure of meeting at a workshop in NYC a couple weeks ago) basically said, "Ship it."

My fear and loathing and introversion cut no ice here: whether self-publishing, signing a Big Five book contract, or undertaking some hybrid, I must promote my own novel.

temporary book cover for Restraint showing the portrait of Tristan in shades of gold, with the title Restraint, A Novel, By Anne Hawley
Not the actual cover--this is a placeholder I've been using for the reader review copy

So I need some advice.

My "platform" is the hundreds of wonderful people who originally read and rooted for and commented on the story when it was fanfic on the AO3.

Exploiting the comments section at AO3 for mass commercial self-promotion feels unethical. But let's say you were one of the people who literally asked in comments to know when the book is coming out. How would you feel about getting a reply to your long-ago AO3 comment, saying, "That day has come and here's how to find out more"?

And if you have any other thoughts about how to reach out, I would love to know your ideas!

Date: 2017-02-25 04:40 am (UTC)
grrlpup: (Default)
From: [personal profile] grrlpup
If I were such a commenter, I would be happy and gratified for you!

It might be especially sweet if when you announced it, you also told them a possible way to get a free copy-- NetGalley, Goodreads giveaway, etc.

And of course slathered on the appreciation for their support of the story back when, but I have no doubt you'd do that anyway.

Date: 2017-02-25 08:13 am (UTC)
lyr: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lyr
I think it's fine to go back to the comments section at AO3 for a little PR. And it's fine to ask your flist to signal-boost your release, too. If you do end up self-publishing, I further suggest offering a free teaser sample people can download to try, and maybe also putting that sample up on a snazzy author website.

Date: 2017-02-26 01:06 am (UTC)
bluemeridian: Chloe from Smallville, with coffee and a sideways look. (Default)
From: [personal profile] bluemeridian
That sounds like it's against the Archive's TOS, so you might want to review it before going that route. I'm specifically thinking of the first entry in the Spam and Commercial Promotion section of the Archive's TOS FAQ ("How strict is the 'no commerce' rule?") and the actual TOS section IV B.

Date: 2017-02-27 02:56 am (UTC)
bluemeridian: Chloe from Smallville, with coffee and a sideways look. (Default)
From: [personal profile] bluemeridian
\o/ Yay! :D

Date: 2017-02-28 02:33 pm (UTC)
greghatcher: (Default)
From: [personal profile] greghatcher
Every writer I know has trouble with this. It comes from the fact that the skill set involved in buckling down and writing a book is almost antithetical to the skill set involved with marketing the damn thing. Most of us are introverted, solitary, daydreamer types, and the thought of bellowing at people about how you wrote a book and should get money from them to read it just seems beyond crass.

So I always remind myself that I can't be an option if I'm invisible. I have the advantage of a publisher who is ALSO trying to sell the books, so there are places I can link to, and even so I still tend to be somewhat blushing and self-effacing about it.

Don't be afraid to use the connections you have. I send everyone to the Amazon page and am pretty shameless about asking for reviews; it's kind of sourly amusing to me that of the various anthologies I'm in most of the Amazon reviews are from my friends or people who know me from the column, so I at least feel like I'm doing my share. My various co-contributors are clearly even more isolated and awkward than I am.

Truthfully I was thinking about asking if you wanted to do some sort of e-interview about the project for the Junk Shop. I think the story behind RESTRAINT is a lovely throwback to the olden days of when I was getting started and lots of people broke in by doing fanzines. The arc is still the same but now it's electronic, and you are more conversant with the new e-fanfic culture than I am. I can talk your ear off about the paper ones like CAPA-Alpha and GRUP and Alter Ego and so on, but the electronic children of those are largely opaque to me. But we should wait until we can direct people to a platform where they can get a copy of your book for themselves.

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