Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Come Together

Group promotion, as in having three or more authors promote their work together, is one of the ways writers can pool their resources and attract more attention than they might on their own.

I've seen postings for Karin Gillespie's Girlfriend Cyber Circuit all over the place (Alison, Tam and M.J. are members), and Marianne Mancusi and Martha O'Connor have definitely gotten more exposure via GCC than they would by promoting from a solo blog.

There are author group blogs, like Sirens' Blog, which host entries by a bunch of writers (everyone, wave to Sam.) Not all of these are done well or are very attractive -- Squawk Radio is just begging for a blog makeover -- but it takes some of the pressure off a writer who doesn't want to post every day.

There are the usual pros and cons with online group promo. One thing I'd like to see more of are groups where each member put out their own opinions versus having everyone post pre-approved publisher propaganda. To do a comparison, here's me talking about another writer's book, as opposed to GCC's promo for Marianne Mancusi. My post generated comments, but I also received another 50+ e-mails asking me for the title to the book. The GCC post provides more information, for sure, but it has no personality. It reads, well, like copy. Competent and very proper, but not exciting. We need to get readers excited.**See end note**

A good mix of authors is essential, especially on a group blog. Sirens' hosts a fairly diverse bunch of voices, and that makes the posts interesting. Another suggestion -- don't have the group just talk about their books. Have them discuss the process, offer funny stories and jokes, debate industry issues, put up link to blogs outside the group, poke a little fun at the books versus shilling them, etc. That way the group doesn't come across like they're only interested in the hard sell.

Has anyone spotted some interesting group blogs? If you have, post a link in comments.

**End note correction: I'm cut-n-pasting this directly out of comments:

Karin Gillespie writes: That's just the Girlfriend Cyber Circuit site which I agree has no personality, and is basically just for information. It's the individual blogs that give the GCC books personality. There are 22 blogging authors and they each blog about the book and put their own spin on it, just like you did with Marianne's book. I, for instance, always interview the author. E. Lockhart finds out their boyfriend list and M.J does their backstory. The main GCC is just a press release site because we get so many inquires.

I made my assumption based on reading two GCC blogs, one of which was the copy site, a couple of weeks apart. Now it's pretty obvious that I should have looked at all of them before I threw out an opinion. My sincere apologies, Karin.

8 comments:

  1. zornhau9:42 AM

    "thing I'd like to see more of are groups where each member put out their own opinions versus having everyone post pre-approved publisher propaganda"

    I think clusters of blogs can be very interesting. For example, Charlie Stross's LJ(http://www.livejournal.com/users/autopope/) seems to be part of an evolving web of interconnected literary bloggers.

    Perhaps the trick is to have parallel blogs with signposts to other members of the group.

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  2. I think group blogs that address a specific topic are great. There is a fairly new group blog I was asked to be part of called Out of the Blogosphere, for some of wonderful paranormal writers. Check us out! http://www.outoftheblogosphere.blogspot.com/

    Shannon McKelden

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  3. what? you don't like the chickens?

    There is some talk about the Romance Unleashed writers doing a blog.

    We're all writers who started at Zebra and we're at about the same stage of our careers (nearly clueless) and it's interesting to see the different styles of dealing with the same sorts of issues.

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  4. Kate,

    Is the "nearly clueless" thing something that develops as you become more experienced? Or is that important for being published at Zebra? (If so, I know where to consider submitting.)

    But seriously, the more I know, the more clueless I realize I am.

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  5. Hey Lynn,

    That's just the Girlfriend Cyber Circuit site which I agree has no personality, and is basically just for information. It's the individual blogs that give the GCC books personality. There are 22 blogging authors and they each blog about the book and put their own spin on it, just like you did with Marianne's book. I, for instance, always interview the author. E. Lockhart finds out their boyfriend list and M.J does their backstory. The main GCC is just a press release site because we get so many inquires.

    Just wanted to set the record straight. Maybe you'd like to join?

    Karin Gillespie

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  6. Karin wrote: Just wanted to set the record straight.

    Which you should have, as my opinion was wrong. I put a correction out on the main post with your comments.

    Maybe you'd like to join?

    I don't do too well in groups, as I can't run, and most of them end up wanting to lynch me. :) Thanks for asking.

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  7. Too bad. I think you'd make a great girlfriend! Thanks for the correction, Lynn. You're a peach.

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    ReplyDelete