I’m fairly new to book promotion. My first release, a time travel romance, came out last July. But before I even had a completed manuscript, I promoted my name and the type of stories I planned to write.
The most important thing you need is an author website. At the time I set mine up, I had no web savvy at all and couldn’t afford to pay anyone else to do a site for me. I used Yahoo sitebuilder. It was low priced, gave me software so I could set the site up by myself, and I can also maintain it and make changes as needed. At first I used the site to promote my name and type of stories I was working on. Now, it showcases my published books and stories with links to where readers can buy a copy.
Another promo tool I used when I was pre-pubbed and still use is blogs. I’m a member of another group blog beside this one and I have an individual blog, plus blog regularly on other sites, like Goodreads and Amazon.com in the published author program. I also look for sites where I can guest blog when I have a new release coming out.I also comment on other’s blogs. This gets my name out and sometimes blog readers click on my name and end up on my site.
Another tool I use is Yahoo promotion loops where I regularly post excerpts of all the books and stories I have out, since they’re all under a year from publication.
A newer promo method I’ve just started, now that I’m pubbed, is to enter my published books on contests. On my first try, my book was chosen as a finalist and I’m awaiting word on whether I’ll take 1st, 2nd or 3rd place.
I’ve also tried social networking, but only on a small time basis, like ning groups. I’m not sure how beneficial they are, since I have limited time to socialize on them. Not ready for anything like Facebook or MySpace either, though other writers use them.The main thing is to find what works for you. What you can afford and which methods won’t take away too much of your time, so you can keep on writing.