It’s an uncomfortable reality to come to grips with for many writers. After all we’re the type that gives up sunlight, vitamin D metabolization and almost all other signs of a normal healthy life to sit closeted alone in a room with only the voices in our heads for company. Going out of our way to talk about our work like not just avid hobbyists but seasoned marketing executives, is the last thing many of us want to do.
Except that we’re not spending all of that time locked up alone so that no one will see any of our hard work. Which is unfortunately what you’re condemning all of your writing to if you don’t get out there every once in a while and shill your shit.
The good news is that there are several different ways to make the most out of your limited social skills and time obligations while promoting your work. I’m one of the limited budget set (also known as I have no money) so my choices for self promotion are limited by that budget. Even so, it’s quite possible to find ample avenues in which to toot your own horn, mostly the various forms of social media.
Options abound even for those with no budget and limited amounts of time to spare. Personally I’ve been utilizing a two pronged approach of blogging and twitter, both of which benefit most simply by consistently posting. It might be better if I was a prolific wordsmith who had mastered the arts of sparity (especially in the case of Twitter) but even when I’m prattling on about my cat and misspelling “definitely” saying something in these forums is much better than saying nothing at all. If you’re intimidated by the thought of letting any of the uncouth unrefined spew that you’d usually cut out of a novel or story be your candid representation and get hung up on choosing the perfect words in every situation, to the point that you can only manage maybe 5 tweets a day and maybe one blog post a month – then you’ll have to focus the brunt of your self promotion elsewhere.
Blog tours, author interviews and reviews, paid advertising are all potential ways to promote yourself and your books. Something as simple as commenting on other authors blogs or participating in ereader/writer forums can also work wonders for getting the word out about your stories. Remember you are a brand, whether you want to be or not, and act accordingly.