Lisa Ricard Claro – Author

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Now Showing: Me!

Posted on Oct 26, 2011 by Lisa Ricard Claro   10 Comments | Posted in schmooze · self-promotion
Clip art courtesy of Webweaver

Last week, I told you the naked truth about “schmoozing.” This week my naked truth topic is schmoozing’s ugly sister: “self-promotion.”
Technically, schmoozing is self-promotion, but it’s self-promotion within a like-minded group of people. But plain old self-promotion, the kind I’m talking about, is what we do outside the schmoozing scenario. And as difficult as schmoozing is, straight self-promotion is harder—and every bit as important.
As writers, we just want to write. It’s tough enough being bogged down by the normal responsibilities of daily living without adding a sales job to the must-do list. But here’s the thing, buttercup.  If you don’t promote yourself as a writer/author, who will? How will the word get out? It’s fine to hit the schmooze button every now and then and chat it up with other writers, but if your dream is publication, you better be building a groundswell of readers.  Your future publisher will expect you to arrive with an entourage.
Some obvious means of self-promotion include maintaining a website and/or blog, joining Facebook and Twitter; passing out your business card to anyone and everyone; getting to know librarians and bookstore owners/managers; attending open mic nights for poetry/short story readings.  Brainstorm and you’ll think of plenty more.
So what about me? Here I am on a rant about self-promotion and the best I have to offer is my little blog and a static website. I don’t even tweet! (Honestly, I’m still patting myself on the back for schmoozing last week.) The whole self-promotion thing is still a puddle I’m learning to splash in. I know I have to do it, and I will. But just like at the neighborhood pool, I’ve got to start small, toes first.
What about you? Do you spend time promoting yourself and your work? Besides the usual methods for self-promotion, have you developed something brilliant you’re willing to share? C’mon, buttercup. How do you self-promote? Tell us. Schmooze a little.
See you next for Book Blurb Friday!
Lisa

10 Responses to "Now Showing: Me!"

  1. Comment by Linda O'Connell
    October 26, 2011 at 7:05 am  

    I am attending a workshop on this topic next Saturday. Although I have made TV appearances to promote my Chicken Soup stories, and have been interviewed, I still find it difficult to self-promote, other than on FB and my blog. I'm sure your name will be on a real marquee before long.

  2. Comment by irishoma
    October 26, 2011 at 9:09 am  

    Hi Lisa,I'm really not the schmoozing type, but I belong to some writers' groups, have a blog, am on FB, and Tweet from time to time. I also tend to volunteer for non-writing groups I support, which sometimes turns into opportunities to promote my work. Donna

  3. Comment by Cathy C. Hall
    October 26, 2011 at 9:46 am  

    Lisa, I've found that there's intentional self-promotion (blah,blah,blahing about yourself through social networking)and UNintentional self-promotion. I certainly do my share of blah-blahing about myself, and that's important, but it's the unintentional promotion that I love! I volunteer in professional writing organizations (and meet new people!), attend book events (and support a friend-and meet new people!), and maybe send out a guest post for a friend's blog (and meet new people!). It's good karma, baby–and SO much more fun. 😉

  4. Comment by Laraine Eddington
    October 26, 2011 at 1:25 pm  

    I bake brownies, eat half and share the rest.

  5. Comment by Bookie
    October 26, 2011 at 5:23 pm  

    I don't schmooze well at all. I thought writing a blog was about as self-promoting as I could get.Facebook is a trial for me. Maybe someday I will do better, have more worth pushing!

  6. Comment by Seasons
    October 27, 2011 at 7:08 am  

    Lisa, you will write your own letter of recommendation. People – they come and go. Give yourself time, and don't ask how much.

  7. Comment by Karen Lange
    October 27, 2011 at 9:40 am  

    I don't care for self promotion at all, but like you, I'm learning. I interviewed an author recently and she said that it is something she hates, a "necessary evil". I think we can do it in a way that's not obnoxious, just working to find a good balance.

  8. Comment by Tammy
    October 27, 2011 at 6:58 pm  

    I too am horrible at it. But I find other writers are so much fun to hang around with, so that part I can manage!

  9. Comment by Lynn
    October 27, 2011 at 8:00 pm  

    Ack schmoozing is Really Difficult for me. I do FB on occasion and just today actually promoted by blog post! I will actually read my story at a book signing/reading – that will be a first. People will probably think I'm having some kind of fit! 🙂 from all the shaking I'll be doing! Oh yeah, guess I need to promote that, don't I?

  10. Comment by Carmen @LifeLines
    October 30, 2011 at 12:40 pm  

    I don't Tweet, but I do blog. Lately, I find that the random all-over-the-board topics of my blog seems to be leading me somewhere into a "theme." I'm even seeing a little book idea in there. I'm not shy about self-promoting~~~I'm just not sure how to go about it. I promote somewhat on FB. My biggest thing is to get past the whole "putting myself out there" to the world. I would like to be a bestselling author but maintain my privacy~~~not sure that's possible these days. :)I discovered the benefits of announcing/promoting your talents and accomplishments and skills long ago when writing my application essay for Graduate School, and I went on to help others write letters of self-promotion for grad school and employment opportunities. So, by all means toot your own horn–loudly.


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