For those like myself and many of my friends that choose either in part or completely to go the Indie / Self Publishing route there a several things you can do to help raise awareness about your book. I know this sounds like I am talking marketing and I normally do marketing tips on Fridays so don't worry this tip can fall under either category. Instead of focusing on the already much covered topic of submitting for agents and publishers I thought I would jump ahead to once you have already published.
If you are still focusing on the traditional publishing aspect, my hat is off to you. You are not alone, there are thousands of submissions each year, in some cases each month, to the traditional publishers and agents. f you one of the lucky ones to get in and hold your author copy in your hands then cherish it and accept my congratulations. For the rest of us I want to tell you about something I have recently decided to embark on, submitting for contests and awards.
Of course this idea comes with a great deal of prestige if your book is selected as the winner. There are a number of social media sites, blogs and websites your book will appear on not to mention as the winner you can elevate your own marketing and reach a wider audience. It is well known and understood that winning an award can also make your book stand out as desirable because it appears to have been checked out and approved by trusted professionals and not just your book loving aunt.
If you remember several weeks ago I wrote about the submitting bible Writer's Market. In there one can find lists of agents, publishers and a chapter on the almighty query letter. There is also an extensive list of magazines that accept submissions for freelance contributors. This can be a great way to make extra money and I will be writing more about it next week. If you keep reading through the very large reference volume you will also discover lists of contests and awards for nearly every genre of writing out there.
You can of course also search social media and enter literary contests and awards into Google or your other favorite search engine if you prefer. Once you do your research and make your list of awards or contests you feel would best be suited for your story you can begin the further reading to find the guidelines. Remember that like agents and publishers every contest and award is a little different and you cannot submit in a one size fits all fashion. Some awards to require an entrance fee and / or a copy of the book for consideration. I am still making my list and working hard to make sure I have all of the guidelines for my own submissions. In the future I will be posting as I submit and the steps I take to share my journey with anyone wishing to possibly join along.