Tag Archive - writing success

8 Tips for Writing Success from a Writing Genius

Today’s guest post is by Fred Johnson.

The late David Foster Wallace (1962­–2008) has long been recognized as a literary genius by those qualified to decide such things. His 1996 novel Infinite Jest blew critics away with its complexity, inimitable style, and sheer length, and his other novels, along with his essays, short stories, and works of nonfiction, have been praised as works of startling originality and substance.

While it would be unwise to try to imitate Wallace’s own idiosyncratic style, it’s undoubtedly a good idea to listen to what this giant of American letters had to say about writing and getting stuff done.

So without further ado, here are David Foster Wallace’s eight tips to make you a better writer. Continue Reading…

Growing Your Audience One Fan at a Time

The last two Thursdays I’ve been addressing a huge concern of many writers, and that’s the challenge of how to grow an audience of readers who love your books. I shared the top three things I feel are essential and that’s 1) write a great book, 2) find the perfect niche, and 3) grow your fans one at a time.

The #1 bit of advice successful authors give me and blog about is “focus on your mailing list.” Last week I talked at length about the benefits of a mailing list of faithful readers—or at least interested readers who may turn into devoted fans. And I shared some of the strategies that seem to be working for many authors.

Writers can find countless blog posts on marketing, promoting, and ways to get discovered, from contacting Amazon reviewers to doing costly giveaways to blasting every social media channel out there. But you might agree that we can spend eight hours a day on all this and not get any traction. Continue Reading…

Growing Your Audience by Growing a Mailing List

Last week I shared three ways you can successfully grow your audience. This is a big concern for writers. I believe discoverability is the #1 word for authors. Our books are vying for the attention of readers in a sea of millions of other books. To grow your audience, you first have to have readers find you.

While word of mouth is great and often the best way for a book to rise in the ranks and get noticed by readers, we writers can’t spend all our time spreading the word (or convincing others to do so) about our books.

Some hope their publisher will do this for them, but we all know that’s really not going to happen. If you’re a big-selling author, your publisher will throw some money at your publicity. But at that point, it’s probably not needed all that much.

Just know that you can’t expect your publisher to grow your audience for you. I know a number of authors who want desperately to get picked up by a traditional publisher for the reason they don’t want to deal with marketing. Oh to be back in the day when publishers truly promoted their authors with paid ads and book-signing tours. Continue Reading…

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