I learned something today as a result of something else I had already figured out: It’s good to network. I know–you already knew that. But it’s one of those things that it’s okay to repeat. In a post today in an online group for writers and readers, a member explained the importance of using the “like” button on a writer’s Amazon Author’s page, i.e., that the more “likes” an author gets on his page, the more attention Amazon pays to promoting him or her.
Now this may not be news to you, but I’m sure it’s news to somebody besides just me. Did I mention that I’m one of “those people” who likes the feel of a book between my hands? You know, a “real” book with those annoying paper pages that you have to actually turn, and that you can’t read in the dark without a light on, and that take up room in your luggage when you travel? See, I know all the downsides, and I still love them.
I resisted actually purchasing or reading an eBook, or buying something to read one on, or even joining Amazon, until long after I had finished the manuscript for my first mystery, began my second AND made the decision to market them as eBooks rather than to spend years finding an agent and then a traditional print publisher. So I not only have a lot to learn, I have a lot to unlearn, and a whole new way of thinking to absorb.
And the rest of what I learned today is that besides the “like” button, there are other things you should do every time you buy a book through Amazon or probably any other seller. You should also post that you just bought the book and then submit a review of the book after you’ve read it. It doesn’t have to be a big, glowing review unless it really moved you. A simple sentence, preferably a simple, kind sentence, is all that’s necessary, because, once again, the more reviews a book gets, the more promotion Amazon will give it.
It all counts. All those things I wasn’t paying any attention to count. I was buying the books of friends and shortchanging them because I simply didn’t know that sales aren’t the only thing that matters. And now I know–because someone took the time to post an explanation and reminder to the authors and readers in a group they belong to.
Which is the main thing I learned today–that it ALL counts. Sharing. Helping. Paying attention. And passing on information. Even if some people already know, others won’t. When someone extends a hand, take it. When you move up a step on the ladder, reach back to the person below you and help them move up. That’s networking. That’s how you not only build success, but how you share it. It’s how you grow as a writer, and as a person. And THAT is real success.