1. Get a Professional Headshot
Social media is essential for all authors. Many readers and book buyers will meet you online, and first impressions are important. You can use a professional photographer, but a friend/family member with a cell phone and a good eye works well too. Check out this article with tips for getting a good picture.
2. Create a Blog
The best way to gather a following is to publish regularly—and that means more than books. We recommend Medium to get started. The key to a successful blog is updating regularly, and announcing each post on social media. Also, you don’t have to talk about writing. Readers are interested in you and your life: what’s fascinating about you?
3. Claim Your Goodreads Account
Goodreads is still the place to be for voracious readers. Once you sign up, follow the simple, step-by-step process for authors, which is outlined on the site. People leave reviews, ask the author questions, and curate virtual bookshelves with their favorites.
4. Create Your Amazon Author Page
The publishing world is always changing and evolving, but Amazon is here to stay, at least in the foreseeable future. An Amazon Author Page is simple to set up, and requires no maintenance. Head to Amazon Author Central and create an account. Add your bio, your book title(s), your beautiful headshot, and a link to your blog.
5. Join Reader’s Circle
Reader’s Circle is a hotbed of book clubs. When you sign up, your book is listed on the homepage for a month. (Currently featured: Inkwater authors Phil Hutcheon and Beth MacMillan, and their books, Where Triples Go to Die and Thursday’s Child.) In addition to the Reader’s Circle homepage listing, you are included in their two databases of books and authors for one year. Book clubs around the world use that database to discover new books, and Reader’s Circle connects authors to these book clubs. Authors can be invited to join a book club meeting (in person or via video chat) for a Q&A or just a conversation.
Next up: avoiding scams and predatory author marketing schemes.