To Market or to Write?

The battle cry for real estate agents is location, location, location. When I bought my former home, my agent expounded on the desirable location. When I hired the same agent nearly 17 years later to sell the house, his interest was almost completely focused on the fact that it only had 1.5 bathrooms and that just isn’t enough for buyers. Guess what? It sold entirely based upon the location. The buyer didn’t care that it was half a bath short.

My first book is out. It’s selling decently for a debut novel. The sales are nothing earth shattering but the genre, lesbian mystery, is a hot one and that’s what’s moving the needle. Meanwhile, I’m hard at work on my second book for the series. I really hoped to have it out by Christmas but late January is looking more likely. Life just gets in the way sometimes!

I’ve been caught up in a back and forth online with a couple of other writers over the past few days about writing versus marketing. I have a couple of Kindle free days coming up – Thursday and Friday the 11th and 12th if you’re interested – and that’s what spurred to discussion. Now, frankly, I did all of the things all the big online book marketers say you should do when selling an ebook for the first time to make it visible but, beyond that, I haven’t really pushed. I was of a mind to just let these first two free days ride with Amazon and see how they went.

One of my discussion partners agrees with me. She says, since I don’t have a second book or even several books out yet, focusing on a heavy marketing effort as a relative unknown still won’t get me very far. She thinks my time is better spent focused on my writing. The third person in our conversation disagrees. He thinks I should go whole hog with a marketing effort to spur sales, get my name out there, collect fan names on a mailing list and get them clamoring for my next book. His refrain is market, market, market!

Guess what I opted to do? That’s right; I took a middle of the road approach. I’m going to post the freebie in a few Facebook Groups and a few Goodreads groups. I rejoined Twitter – something I left when I left the recruiting profession – made a few contacts and I set up some automated tweets to go out for me on those days. I really don’t plan to spend a whole lot of time on the time sucks that are Facebook and Twitter but I don’t want to be seen as strictly a marketer either. Finally, I’ve contacted just a few promoters that are free and asked them to promote the book those days.

Should I do more? Probably. Should I write too? Definitely. Somewhere there has to be a happy medium. Hopefully, I’ve hit it or come close to it. We’ll see when it’s all said and done early Saturday morning!

About Anne Hagan

I'm an East Central Ohio based government employee by day and a fiction author by night. I specialize in mystery fiction featuring lesbian sleuths and cozy fiction featuring women sleuths. I also dabble in romance especially romantic lesfic. I live with my wife and our dogs in a tiny town that’s even smaller than the Morelville of my first fiction series and we wouldn't have it any other way. My wife grew up here and she has always called this little village home. Though it’s an ultra-conservative rural community, we're surrounded here by family, longtime friends and many other wonderful people with open hearts and minds. My wife and I are the co-owners of a commercial haunted house: Hagan's House of Horrors. Much as my dream has always been to write fiction, hers has been to create it through the medium of horror. We went full commercial in 2015. Watch us as we grow!
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