Thursday, June 13, 2019

Attention Authors: You're Not Going To Run Out of Readers

There is a worrying thought that niggles in the mind of every author when they look at their sales charts. It buzzes like a fly you can't quite shoo away, whispering in your ear with the certainty of an anxiety-driven fever dream that it's over. Every book has a shelf life, and yours has spoiled. No one else is going to read it, so it's time to put something new out, or to lay down and die. There's only so many readers out there, after all, and you had your shot.

Guess I'll just bury my career, then.
Before you believe this voice too wholeheartedly, there's something I'd like to remind you of. Something that I've found can act as the garlic to this particular thought vampire; there are new readers coming into your genre every day. So in reality, there is a steady stream of readers out there that don't even know they have a date with your book... you just have to find them, and set them up.

A Potentially Infinite Spread

Think of the biggest bestseller you can. Harry Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone, maybe? Perhaps Stephen King's classic horror It? Or maybe the spy thriller Casino Royale, for the Bond fans out there? These books are all bestsellers, and they've all been read by millions of people across multiple generations. But there are people out there right now who are active readers that have never picked up copies of these books.

So even when you're at the top of a genre, and considered a must-read classic, you're still not out of readers to pitch yourself to.

Speaking of pitches, go get your copy of Crier's Knife!
Even if you reached bestseller status, and you sold one copy of your book to everyone who is currently a fan of your genre as of this moment, there will be more of them tomorrow. New people who just discovered a love of science fiction, old fans who've come back to horror after a long hiatus, or even young readers who are finally deemed mature enough by their parents to be given a copy of your book. You may even have those irregular readers who finally decide to listen to a friend's recommendation, and take a crack at your story.

There are more people out there right now in need of a good read than you could ever reach. Even if you're working in a very niche genre like bigfoot erotica or tabletop RPG guides, there is an ever-growing (and not always obvious) audience ready and willing to snatch up your work.

The Problem Is Reaching Them

With that said, it is entirely possible to reach everyone in a particular venue when it comes to your group. Whether it's a local convention, a regular community yard sale, or the annual library showcase, it's entirely possible that everyone in a limited area has seen or heard of you, and that you've made all the sales you will in that specific venue.

That's why it's so important to spread out, and cover more ground whenever you possibly can.

Pleasure to be here at open mic night! Now, an intro to my novel...
I talked about this in the post Sell Your Book in Unexpected Places (You Might Be Surprised at The Results), but it really can't be driven home hard enough. It is really hard to make your voice heard, and to get people to notice you. The upside is that means you have so many potential venues to move copies of your book that you'll never run out! From Facebook and social media, to your blogs and articles, to local events, to regional conventions, there are so many options out there it will make your head spin!

And each one of them will allow you to reach out to a new group of people who otherwise might never have come across your book. People who've never heard your sales pitch, and who might be starting a life-long love affair with your work.

Having an established audience is good, and a venue where you're well-known is great, but you can never reach too many new readers. Which is why it's important to make sure you go to as many new, unique, and robust venues as you can to find your readers in their natural environment!

That's all for this week's Business of Writing! If you'd like to see more of my work, take a look at my Vocal archive, or at My Amazon Author Page where you can find books like my sword and sorcery novel Crier's Knife!

If you'd like to help support my work, then consider Buying Me A Ko-Fi, or heading over to The Literary Mercenary's Patreon page! Lastly, to keep up with my latest, follow me on FacebookTumblrTwitter, and now on Pinterest as well!

No comments:

Post a Comment