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Now you need to make another connection—one that many writers (as many of us are introverts) struggle with.
The Author-Reader connection.
I don’t need to tell you how the world has changed in the last ten years alone. You already know that there used to be a time when authors wrote books and chose whether or not to connect with their readers after publication. If they did, they’d go on book tours and sit through hours of book signings and the especially nice ones would conduct interviews and host book readings.
I’ve touched on this before. Now I’m really going to dive into it.
Things are different, my friends. Long gone are the days when the Author-Reader connection didn’t begin until you had a book on the shelves. Now it doesn’t matter. Thanks to social media, you can begin to build relationships with your future potential readers now. It doesn’t matter if you have a published book or an agent. Hell, it doesn’t even matter if you’ve finished writing your first novel. When it comes to forging that connection, you can’t start too soon.
It took me a while to grasp that. I read this post by Nathan Bransford and protested the notion for months. But who would want to follow me? I thought. I don’t even have an agent looking at my work. I’ve never been published.
Who the hell would read a blog post written by me?
Well, as it turns out, at least 68 of you. Plus many more Twitter followers than I ever thought I’d have.
Things are different now, fair readers. I have at least one book in my TBR pile that I discovered not because of raving reviews, but because I thought the author was an awesome person. I should read her book, I thought, not because of a stunning blurb or a gorgeous cover, but because I liked her as a person. The fact that it did have an amazing blurb was a bonus.
The time to make a connection with your readers is now. I don’t care what stage of writing you’re in. If your eventual goal is to be published and you aren’t reaching out to your potential future readers, you’re missing out.
Start now. Don’t wait.
Take it from someone who was, at first, too scared to jump in. People will be interested to hear what you have to say, I promise. Go out there, just be you, and your personality will shine through. People will see it and they’ll gravitate towards you.
Then, before you know it, you’ll have a nice boost to your confidence as well as a circle of wonderful new friends.
What stage of writing are you in? Have you started forging your Author-Reader connection? If so, what reservations did you have before jumping in?