Writing Fiction For Dummies
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Although it’s a wonderful feeling to finally hold your published novel in your hands, it’s an even better feeling to watch your book sell. How exactly do you go about making sure that your novel sells lots of copies and that you, in the process, become a best-selling novelist? Here are some of the best ways to promote your novel:

  • Build a Web site or write a blog. This has become a definite must for promoting a novel or other book. Of course, your site has to tell something about you, the author, but you can also include articles or blog posts on a topic of interest that ties in to your book. That way, you’ll attract readers who never heard of you to your site.

  • Send out a press release. Create a short write-up about your novel — including the publisher, where to buy the book, price, and your name, phone number, and e-mail address — and send the press release via e-mail or the Postal Service to any media that may be interested in letting others know about your book: newspapers, radio stations, bloggers, anyone you can think of.

  • Do readings. Bookstores, schools, and libraries love authors, and they’re often very enthusiastic about scheduling authors to do readings, workshops, and all sorts of events. Speak with the person in charge to find out how you can get onto their reading schedule.

  • Mail or e-mail sample copies of your book for reviews. If your publisher has some money set aside for marketing, then it’ll probably be willing to do the mailing for you. But if not, you can do it yourself. Send copies of your book to the people you think will provide you with publicity by reviewing your book, such as local newspapers, radio stations, and interested bloggers.

  • Hire a book publicist. This should be a last resort due to the cost. A book publicist is an expert in promoting books and hopefully boosting sales in the process. Ask other successful novelists for referrals to a good book publicist, and be prepared to pay handsomely for a talented professional.

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Randy Ingermanson is the award-winning author of six novels. He is known around the world as "the Snowflake Guy," thanks to his Web site article on the Snowflake method, which has been viewed more than a million times. Before venturing into fiction, Randy earned a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from the University of California at Berkeley. Randy has taught fiction at numerous writing conferences and sits on the advisory board of American Christian Fiction Writers. He also publishes the world’s largest e-zine on how to write fiction, The Advanced Fiction Writing E-zine. Randy’s first two novels won Christy awards, and his second novel Oxygen, coauthored with John B. Olson, earned a spot on the New York Public Library’s Books for the Teen Age list. Visit Randy’s personal Web site at www.ingermanson.com and his Web site for fiction writers at www.AdvancedFictionWriting.com.

Peter Economy of La Jolla, California, is a bestselling author with 11 For Dummies titles under his belt, including two second editions and one third edition. Peter is coauthor of Writing Children’s Books For Dummies, Home-Based Business For Dummies, Consulting For Dummies, Why Aren’t You Your Own Boss?, The Management Bible, and many more books. Peter also serves as Associate Editor of Leader to Leader, the Apex Award-winning journal of the Leader to Leader Institute. Check out Peter’s Web site at www.petereconomy.com.

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