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Blogging tips for fiction authors

Letting your fans peek behind the curtain of your process and professional life help engage them and build rapport and loyalty
Photo: photlook (curtain), Scott Williams (woman); Design: Carma Spence

It is often easier to see the value in blogging for nonfiction authors than fiction authors. But if you are a Long Beach novelist or short story writer, you can grow a fan base with blogging, as well. Here are some tips for using a blog to increase visibility and sales of your fiction work.

Give fans a peek behind the curtainWhen readers are engaged with their favorite authors, when they feel like they are "in the know" about how you come up with your ideas and what project you're working on now, they are much more loyal and will buy more of your stuff. Here are some items you can include on your blog that will give your fans a peek behind the "curtain," so to speak:

  • Are you attending events? Let your readers know!
  • Blog about your creative process. Let your fans know what’s going on with you, your writing and even their favorite characters.

Involve fans in your project
Many authors post first drafts of their work, chapter by chapter, on their blog. Serializing your first draft is a great way to get feedback on your work to help you polish and fine-tune it, while giving your fans the thrill of participation.

Kealan Patrick Burke serialized his first draft of Master of the Moors. This not only helped him grow his list of fans, it got him a publishing contract for the final draft!

Share your research
Are you researching topics to give your fiction verisimilitude? Write blog posts about what you’ve uncovered. Doing this has two benefits:

  1. It educated your readers so they will read your next book better informed, and
  2. It can help you learn the material better, which makes incorporating your knowledge into your work easier.

Celebrate with pictures
When you're out and about, attending conventions, networking, doing book signings - take pictures! Share those happy and fun moments with your fans by posting them on your blog. Want to take this idea up a notch? Bring a flip cam and share video recorded moments from these events.

Have you reached a milestone in your creative journey? Share that celebration on your blog, as well.

There are many more ways you can develop a worthwhile blog that attracts readers and keeps them engaged with your work. But these should get you started.

Are you an entrepreneurial author? Do you want to be? Are you ready to build your business and platform so that it expresses your creativity, conveys your worth and message authentically and is profitable? Visit www.carmaspence.com to learn more.

NOTE: Are you a writer, author or editor connected to Long Beach in some way? Please contact me ... and you can be a part of my series of profiles of local writers!