Romance By Catherine: Make Welcome S.G. Rogers

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Make Welcome S.G. Rogers

Today I'd like all of you to welcome S. G. Rogers. I've met Suzanne on Twitter and invited her here today to offer a Tuesday tip.

Suzanne is graciously offering a free download of her YA Fantasy novel to one lucky winner. All you have to do to be entered into the drawing is post a comment and answer one question. 
Are you ready for the question...
Wait for it...

What was your favorite YA novel you read growing up?

Now, for Suzanne's words of wisdom.
Pass It On – A Word to the Wise

“I always pass on good advice. It is the only thing to do with it. It is never of any use to oneself.”
- Oscar Wilde

I wish someone had told me when I decided to be a writer that there was more to being an author than a skillful turn of a phrase.  I was so laser-focused on improving my craft I didn’t think about building an audience for my work beforehand.  You DO have to focus on your craft, and there are many classes, books, workshops and critique groups that will help you with that.  But I’ve discovered that the publishing industry is a business—a terribly competitive one.  Getting published is only the beginning of promoting your work as an author…and promote you must. 
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
- Dale Carnegie


To advance your writing career you have to be willing to join groups and be genuinely supportive of others.  Find quality places to lend your time and talent and you’ll make the kind of friends who will be there for you when your book comes out.   I’ve seen people use a Facebook page or their blog to build a following—by offering recipes, book reviews or a forum of some sort.  Writers’ groups, online or otherwise, are always great places to give and receive support.  If you are already a member of a group, let everyone know about your goals, and be prepared to help them with theirs.  Twitter can be a very useful tool, particularly when you give fellow authors a pat on the back or retweet their links.  When you support your fellow twits, they will tend to repay the favor.


“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
- Benjamin Franklin
Keep in mind the end goal is not just to get published…it’s to sell books.  A publisher, particularly a small one, can only do so much to push your title.  Although they may have a list of reviewers they usually send advance reading copies (ARCs), do your own research and compile a list of your own.  You should plan to send review requests out ahead of time—sometimes months before the book is released.  It’s optimum to have book reviews come out to coincide with the publication of your book.  Keep strict records on these reviewers and their policies (some won’t review e-books, for example).  Send polite thank you emails to each one who reviews your book (good or bad).  Remember, you’re building relationships with these ‘gatekeepers’ and you want to stay positive.  You should also plan to have a blog tour set up ahead of time.   


Although I’ll be in a much better position with my next title, I was caught somewhat flat-footed when “The Last Great Wizard of Yden” was released.  I’ve quickly learned some hard lessons, and for better or worse I can now give good advice.  Pass it on. 


~S.G. Rogers


OMG, S.G. I completely agree with everything you've said. I think an author needs to build a platform long before they finish their first book.
After his father is kidnapped, sixteen-year-old Jon stumbles across a closely guarded family secret--one that will challenge everything he has ever believed about his father and himself. A magical ring his father leaves behind unlocks a portal to another dimension, but in using it, Jon unwittingly unchains the forces of evil. A crisis develops when a malevolent wizard transports to Earth to kidnap one of Jon’s friends. With the help of some unlikely schoolmates, and a warrior princess from Yden, Jon embarks on a dangerous quest to free his friend and his father from the most vicious wizard the magical world has ever known. In the end, Jon will be forced to fight for his life as he attempts to rescue the last great wizard of Yden.
Be sure and follow Suzanne on twitter @suzannegrogers
and her Facebook page by clicking here
Remember to leave a comment and answer the question.

33 comments:

S.G. Rogers said...

Thank you for having me on your blog, Catherine!

Patricia Kiyono said...

Thanks for the advice, SG! I was clueless when my first novella came out, and my sales aren't anywhere close to those who are always doing promo. But I'm learning.

As for my favorite YA books, I read the Boxcar Children when I was young, but found myself re-reading it later (I know that dates me, but I still think it's a great books!). What I loved about it was the resourcefulness and self-sufficiency of the children. Kinda like the heros and heroines I like to write.

S.G. Rogers said...

Thank you, Patricia. I think as we go along we know more and more about how to reach an audience. But it's tough getting there.

Derek said...

While in school, I read The Guardians by John Christopher, little realising that the separation between two ways of life would rear its head again in my own fantasy novel Covenant.

Catherine Bybee said...

You're very welcome SG

Patricia and Derek: Thanks for stopping by today.
Be sure and follow S.G. on twitter.

Cathie Dunn said...

Fab post, Suzanne. So true! It's very time consuming but then you get news of another sale and you're excited. It's ultimately rewarding to see your hard work bear fruit.

Oh, I used to enjoy a little known series called The Three Investigators which was linked to Alfred Hitchcock, although his name was only used through licence (not that I had a clue at the time lol). Otherwise, I moved from reading Enid Blyton straight to Agatha Christie! ;-)

Good luck with your book!

Arley Cole said...

Great advice, Suzanne!!! I have been overwhelmed myself with all the stuff that comes with promotion for The Blacksmith's Daughter (insert shameless plug here). For all who do not win their free copy of LGWofY, I highly recommend that you just go get it! It's a fabulous story full of characters you will care about in a seriously cool fantasy setting. I highly recommend!!!

Viviane Brentanos said...

Very informative post. Thank you

Nancy Jardine said...

Ditto on the great advice. It's quite daunting to find out just how much promo is needed when you are a debut author, as I am. All advice is wonderful, but it also takes a bit of courage to 'get yourself out there' when it's not in your nature. I got seriously overwhelmed around publication date of Aug 24th this year and am, admittedly slowly, getting into more action now on Facebook and blog etc.

S.G. Rogers said...

No plugs are shameless anymore, Arley! I highly recommend "The Blacksmith's Daughter!"

I agree, Nancy, about the extent of promotion necessary. It's frustrating not to know what works and what doesn't. I'm sure by the time my second title comes out in two months, I'll be a little wiser.:-)

Beth Trissel said...

Interesting post, ladies. And I totally agree with the points you made.

Katherine said...

Great post. I'm a new author who is also learning as I go along. I have to admit I never gave a thought to doing promotion etc before my novel was released. Now that I know better, I'll be better prepared when my novella comes out in a few months. Thanks for sharing your tips.

Toni Lynn said...

Great post, Suzanne. Here's a question. I'm told to by fellow writer's to start promoting my book which I hope will be released next year.

Aside from telling every Tom, Dick, and Harry that I have a book coming out, how else do I promote or set up a blog tour with no release date?

Thanks so much. Good luck with your book.

Amaleen Ison said...

Great information, Suzanne. I wish this post had been available a year ago when I first started writing. I think many would be authors enter the business without much of an idea about the necessity of an author platform.

S.G. Rogers said...

Toni, you're right. I don't think you can set up a blog tour without a release date. But if you support your fellow authors with their blog hops, and make sure they know you were there (by leaving comments about their posts) I think these authors will be much more inclined to help you when your time comes around. You might also start writing guest blog articles (many authors love to host others!) to get your name out there. I'd also start compiling lists of review sites to send review requests (although you should coordinate this with your publisher) and places you can plug your book when you've at least got your cover art, release date and approved blurb.

S.G. Rogers said...

Amaleen, you can count me among the bewildered, but I'm learning fast!

Catherine Bybee said...

Cathie: Thanks for stopping by.

Arley: Plug away, m'dear, that's one reason why we're here.

Vibiane: Thanks for coming.

Nancy: If you make promo fun, it isn't that hard. Just chat and be yourself and things will come easier.

Beth and Katherine: thanks for coming, ladies.

Toni: I think S.G. tokd you the bulk of it. You have to have a twitter / facebook presence in order to tap into people when you need to. Re-tweeting posts is a way to make some passive points with authors who will return the favor when your times comes. Hint...hint... LOL

Amaleen: Actually, I have a series of video blogs on youtube covering things you can do while waiting for your editor or release or whatever. Most of it still applies. Check 'em out.

Mackenzie Crowne said...

I'm here soaking up the knowledge. Another fact filled blog. As a newbie, I'm excited, horrified, overwhelmed, and exhausted, but by the time I release ... Ahem, plug! Gift of the Realm, this spring, I hope to have a good hold on at least some of what I need to do. Catherine, I'll be checking out those youtube video blogs for sure. Thanks for sharing, ladies.

S.G. Rogers said...

I'll go have a look at those videos, too. Thanks for bringing that up, Catherine!

Catherine Bybee said...

Mackenzie and SG - The video blogs are a couple of years old, but most of the info is still doable. I'll be doing more on the twitter / facebook connection and how important they are. I'm hoping that RWA will pick up my proposal for a class on this subject at the conference this year. We'll see.

Beth Trissel said...

I need more info on the youtube video blog thing. I'm not clear on exactly what they are, how I'm to make one...

Catherine Bybee said...

I think I have a vlog on how to do a vlog as well. LOL - but I'll be happy to blog about the way I do it again. I have a new computer so there is a learning curve with it to make more. But I'll get back to you, Beth.

Catherine Bybee said...

http://www.youtube.com/user/CatherineBybee?feature=mhee My youtube page link... Fair warning. I make trailers for my wonderful and talented critique partner who writes m/m erotic romance. enjoy.

Cathie Dunn said...

Thank you for sharing, Catherine. I heard of video blogs but have no clue about them. I'll check out your link. :-)

Sherry Gloag said...

Catherine, you said you've just got a new PC/laptop if it is windows 7 the video maker supplied is a bit 'iffy' and lacking. Try going online to download Windows Movie Maker 6 -if you used the windows version. It has the time line, which Win 7 has elimanted.

Sherry Gloag said...

SG my response and thanks for your post got eaten by the ether monster. Very informative and interesting. I still struggle with the promo side of the writing business.

AJ Nuest said...

Hi S.G.! Okay, I can over to this blog today for one reason only. TO WIN A COPY OF YDEN! Gimme, gimme! However, I loved this post my friend. So many things you said rang true for me. And I wish, wish, wish I would have known about all the social networking, building followers and getting involved in other writing communities BEFORE I got published. The good news is -- I've made so many incredibly wonderful and supportive friends during this process, I can't ever imagine my life without them.

Oh, and the book I recall from my youth? Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry. Not sure if that is classified as a YA, but that book changed my life.

S.G. Rogers said...

AJ, your comment makes me think about the old adage--it's not the destination, it's the journey that matters.

Catherine Bybee said...

Hey Sherry I have a adobe video program, very cool stuff. I just need to learn the curve with the newest version.

Catherine Bybee said...

LOL AJ... thanks for coming.

Adriana said...

Great advice! There's so much to do before your book comes out. I really didn't realize this until this fall when I began poking around, trying to figure out if I was supposed to do anything before Muse put my book out in March. Um, yeah. I was completely blown away.

Thank you for helping us newbies learn the easy way! :) Congrats on your book - it sounds so cool!

Adriana

Catherine Bybee said...

Cathie Dunn was the winner of the free download. Thanks everyone for stopping by. Be sure and pick up a copy of S.G's book for your winter reading.

AntKathy said...

Great blog, S.G.!I'm too late for the drawing; however, my favorite YA books were "The Bobbsey Twins" adventures. I read them when I was quite young,second or third grade, and quickly graduated to Agatha Christie and Alfred Hitchcock stories.