Ro Lockhart is a juvenile fiction/fantasy writer who just released her book, Elementals, in February on the Amazon Kindle. Check out her list of marketing techniques below.
1. Pretend for a moment I’m a reader looking for my next book. Pitch me your book in five to ten sentences.
My pitch: “Amy and her father decide to take a camping trip in the great outdoors to reconnect, only to find that their trip takes on some uninvited guests: an exotic but fierce elf, a Druid witch bent on revenge, and a whole slew of frightening elementals.
Between the prophetic dreams Amy’s having and Unna, a banished Druid with evil intentions and her minions on Amy’s tail, it’s a race against time to battle elementals, traverse and treachorous terrain, solve puzzles and find the courage neither of them thought they had.”
2. What motivated you to become an indie writer?
I’ve been writing since elementary school and I always had the grand notion that I would grow up and write a few books, they would fly off of shelves and I would be rich and famous. Well, that didn’t happen.
It took not only my own rejections from agents and publishers to help me see the light but other authors as well.
So many authors with phenomenal work were getting rejected left and right. But then I heard about the success of a few indie authors and realized that this is a new day where, if you really want to make it and have ambition (as well as a good story), you can be the weaver of your own destiny.
3. Have you been traditionally published? Why or why not?
I have not been published traditionally because after the first few rejections, I found that if I went at it on my own I would do better than doing nothing at all.
4. How have you liked self-publishing so far?
Well, I’m rather new to self-publishing. In fact, my book, “Amy Sinclair Chronicles: Elementals,” was just released for Amazon Kindle this February. So far, so good, it’s not selling like hotcakes but that part is up to me and how well I do at self-marketing.
5. Tell me about the marketing techniques you’ve used to sell your books. Which ones have been the most successful?
So far I’ve been marketing myself through social media. It seems to work, especially if you have family, friends and colleagues who want to see you succeed. But there are other ways to get yourself known. A few tips I would give to potential indie writers are:
a) Get networking! Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn are all great ways to connect and market yourself.
b) Find a community! Meaning get out there and join workshops, go to conferences, talk to your local bookshops and librarians. You need to socialize.
c) Blog! Fans like to be kept updated about you and your future works; it inspires them to keep reading your work.
d) Be ambitious! When you’re an indie writer no one can stop you from being successful but you. If you don’t have the ambition to want to be successful you never will be.
6. Are there any marketing techniques you intentionally avoided or discontinued, and if so, why?
Nope. I would just warn writers to research any company you plan to use for print on demand. Some of them will take you for all you’re worth. And when you’re a novice indie writer, that usually isn’t much, but it can be everything to you.
7. What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about self-publishing that you didn’t know when you started out?
I didn’t know the proper formatting techniques but Amazon made theirs easy.
8. If you could do one thing differently in publishing your books, what would it be?
I wish I could’ve spent even more time doing my own illustrations. There are a few, but I was set on finding an illustrator. When I didn’t find one, I did some of the work myself. But in trying to get noticed and get my book out I didn’t take a step back and realize I could have added more illustrations.
9. What projects are you currently working on?
I am currently working on a graphic novel series titled “Phenoms” where a group of inner city friends have an anomalous event happen to them and bestowed unto them are some very unique gifts. However this isn’t your usual super hero comic. There’s much more realism, humor and drama.
10. If you could market your brand – not just one particular book, but your overall brand of writing – in one sentence, what would it be?
I would market myself as a clever and unconventinal writer who has a far reaching imagination whose books are filled with mind candy.
11. How can readers learn more about your books?
Readers can learn more about me and my books at my blog rolockhart.wordpress.com and follow me on Twitter @RoLockhart. Here’s a link to my book on Amazon.
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