Sometimes you wonder why you bother with social networking. And then you make a neat connection, and you’re smiling.
I tweaked my Twitter postings and the market segment that I am seeking a couple of weeks ago (focusing on readers more than writers, and on the specific areas of interest that I am publishing in). I’ve made some good contacts and will hopefully attract some interest for my free Kindle format giveaway of “Deviation” next Friday (I didn’t want to compete with all of the romance giveaways that I’m sure we will see this Friday!)
I got to make some connections with LinkedIn yesterday, and it was cool to see it all fall into place. I got a call from CB, who managed the publication of Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park: Grass, Hills and History while I was working for the Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation. She is now working with us on the publication of a book for Rotary Club of Calgary. She was looking for someone to do a historical accuracy proof of the book, and DM had been recommended to her, but she had no previous connections or contact information for him. She did a search and found that I was a second-degree connection with him on LinkedIn. I checked LinkedIn to see who my connection to DM was, wondering if maybe he was in one of the same writer’s groups as I, and found that he was connected to AM, who had organized a fundraising run for us at Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation. So I popped an e-mail off to AM, asking for an introduction to DM. The two of them were close personal friends, and AM immediately complied, and I hooked up DM to CB, and now he is doing the historical accuracy proof.
So this is great for CB, who got the expert she needed to do the proof, for DM, who got a contract, and for me. CB is firmly convinced that I am the go-to person if she runs into any problems on these projects, and that I “always manage to work miracles”. She is a publishing consultant, and I know that if I was to ever go to her asking for help with my writing/publishing, then even though I have only ever been involved with her through my day job, she would go out of her way to help me and make the connections that I needed.
I have been more active on Goodreads lately. I set up a giveaway for “Looking Over Your Shoulder” (which you can see in my sidebar if the giveaway hasn’t closed yet), which has garnered over 500 entries so far, and over 200 people have added it to their “to read” shelf. Not bad! I have also posted in some of my groups asking for beta readers (for “Stand Alone”) and reviewers (for “Looking Over Your Shoulder”). In doing so, I have met some lovely people who are very passionate about books, and are providing great feedback. What better place to look for readers? I now have four books posted to Goodreads (two released, one to be released next week, I hope, and the next projected for April,) and my profile is looking pretty good!
Of course, you can’t forget the original social network — word of mouth. My mom has been giving books away left and right. We gave some away for Christmas presents. I decided to give my boss a copy (in the twenty years we have worked together, I never told him that I was a novelist,) and his wife is going to take it to her book club. Family, friends, and acquaintances have come to me saying “I never knew you wrote!” Since I wasn’t publishing, and was just writing for my own pleasure, it wasn’t something that I shared about myself. Now it is a different story, and I have to push myself to get the word out there!
Because people can’t buy it until they know about it.
Images: Flickr CC
Zach Taylor, Victory shake
Hans Poldoja, Social network in a course
Daniel Iversen, social media, social networking, social computing tag cloud