This post, by James H. Duncan, originally appeared on his site on 4/7/13.
I recently attended Writer’s Digest Conference East in New York City — my first writing conference in almost seven years — and aside from the standard (though invaluable) advice on craft, career, and publishing options for writers, I picked up these seven tidbits of info that I found especially fascinating. You might too, so enjoy!
1. Bookmarks: Every reader needs them. Heck, I have about thirty around my apartment lying in wait and I still take more when I can. So think about creating some with your name and book title on them. They’re easy to make, inexpensive to print, and they can help spread the word about your book, name, website, or twitter handle long after someone has finished your book. It’s a great tip I picked up from Eric DelaBarre (former writer for Law & Order and author of the hit children’s novel Saltwater Taffy).
2. Author Pages: I’ve used CreateSpace/Amazon to publish a collection of poetry, and I plan to use them to publish my upcoming collection of short stories, but I had no idea that they allow any author—no matter who has published the book—to create and modify an author page at Amazon.com. You can even link blogs and twitter accounts to the page. It’s like having a second website for free. Might have been common knowledge before, but it was cool news to me, and I thank Jon Fine, the director of Author and Publisher Relations for Amazon, for that great tip.
3. Blog to Website: Despite their wide use by industry professionals and writers, many blogs and websites that have the tags .blogspot and .wordpress retain a slight stigma as being “less professional” than a website. So the $10 a year (or so) that these sites charge to turn it into a strictly .com operation is well worth the money to dispel any doubt that you are taking this seriously. It’s on my 2013 To Do list for sure.