Ever since I started my author Instagram account, the app has been one of my biggest time sucks. A lot of it stems from the fact that I can—almost—justify the time I spend there as being productive. Watching other authors’ Reels and scrolling through aesthetic Bookstagram photos counts as research, right?
But the app does offer a chance at a new perspective from time to time. Just the other day, amid videos that joked about the difficult, sometimes painful feeling of trying to promote your book, another author I follow posted her own message about marketing. The discomfort and hesitation that comes with hyping up our own work seems like an almost universal feeling. We may worry about annoying people, fall victim to impostor syndrome, or just feel lost among all the options and advice thrown our way. The author I follow admitted she doesn’t enjoy the marketing stage either. But it’s a stage to celebrate, she said. When you were writing that first draft, in the throes of wrestling with a plot that didn’t make sense or fighting against yourself to get words on the page, you were dreaming of getting here. And as you work on that next book, you’ll catch yourself dreaming of it again.
Promotion is undoubtedly hard work, but it’s a milestone not every author, and certainly not every story, will reach. In these pages, you’ll find a lot about promotional newsletters: an in-depth comparison of a few options, plus a collection of tips and advice about using them effectively from guest author Paul Austin Ardoin. There are other ways you may share your book with readers too—finding a local audience through an author reading, or targeting ads to people who visit your site with the help of a small but mighty analytics tool. No matter how you end up promoting your books, celebrate it. It’s a sign that you crossed the finished line, and it’s the step of the process that turns your passion into a career.
Editor in Chief