Friday, October 1, 2010

A Blog for Writers Who Are Introverts (Aren't We All?)

I found the most delightful blog for writers this week, and I want to pass these links on to you, especially those of you who consider yourselves introverts. As a matter of fact, these posts will be as interesting to bloggers and other readers as they will be to writers.

The blog is Shrinking Violet Promotions: Marketing for Introverts. The bloggers are Mary Hershey and R. L. LaFevers

First of all, I want to point you toward The Introvert's Bill of Rights.

I'm especially fond of #23: "Introverts are allowed to (and actually like to) eat dinner at restaurants or go to movies alone." I always thought I was weird, but apparently I'm just a good introvert.

You might also want to read this blog post: I Will Be Your Friend, But I Will Not Be Your Fan: A Rant About How Authors Use Social Media For Self-Promotion

There's so much I agree with in that post, and I'd love to know what other authors and readers think about blatant self-promotion. There's so much hype about marketing and how we must do lots of this and lots of that to sell our books. Is it all a waste of time?

The rest of the story: I'm especially interested in this topic because I've accepted an invitation to appear on a panel for the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers' October program. The title --From Real-World Bookstores to E-Book Promotion In the Virtual Universe: Strategic Marketing in 2010. My panel mates will be mystery author Beth Groundwater and former president of Pikes Peak Writers, author and media guy Ron Heimbecher.

If you leave a pithy comment today about any aspect of self-promotion or online book marketing, I might just quote you and add your blog's url to my handout.


Tabitha Bird said...

I am not really into the use of social media for the sole purpose of promoting our own writing. It's kind of like being at a party with a room full of people shouting 'look at me, look at me.' However, I am all for creating connections with other writers and potential readers. If those connections should lead to other's interest in your work then so be it, but I loathe if if that's the ONLY reason people connect with me.

Thank you so much for visiting my blog and for your comment on a raw and difficult to write post. Your supportive words matter.

Jan Morrison said...

Hi Patricia! I'm not really an introvert. Most of my friends would hoot at the suggestion. But the truth is I'm not really an extrovert either. When I take the Meyers-Briggs or any other personality type test, I am square in the centre between those two polarities. I have no fear of promoting something that I feel is worthy - to a degree. I'm not scared to stand at a mic in front of thousands of people. My introvertness arises when I haven't fully separated my ego from my project. If I'm too identified with my work then I cannot stand the exposure but if I finally get (and this happens at different times with different projects) that I am NOT my work then I can stand up for this work as I could stand up for you or for Tabitha. Jan Morrison

Michele Emrath said...

I don't consider myself an introvert--but I love to got movies and dinner by myself! Always have. I just feel content with the company (usually a good book!). Maybe that's why I haven't completed an MS...not introverted enough? Hmmm...

Good luck at your conference speech. Honestly, as little as I know you, I didn't know you were an introvert! Sounds like a great blog for marketing ideas regardless of one's personality.


Mary said...

People say introvert like it's a disease. Most don't get the difference between being alone and being lonely. With Adult ADHD my brain goes into overload in crowds so I pull back or go home. It doesn't make me weird; it just makes me tired.

Kaye Barley said...

oh oh oh - a new blog to add to my blog roll. LOVE "The Introvert's Bill of Rights!" thank you!

N. R. Williams said...

With all the news about e-publishing your own book, it seems that the way for new, unpublished authors might be that choice. Especially since it is free. Self promotion goes with the territory. How else will people discover your book and find a way to contact you? However this should be done in good taste.
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Clarissa Draper said...

I'm quite talkative when on the blogisphere but I'm quite scared to be in public. I don't even show my real face because I'm so nervous about it. I'm really glad you posted this.


Patti Struble said...

As we've met & shared coffee at NCW, you already know that I am not a shy girl. But, when it comes to social media, I treat it like a business. There are things I don't share. Facebook is for family & friends. The Twitterverse is for promoting my blog, other writers blogs & articles I find helpful/informative. I tend to shy away from personal quips unless it's pertinent. My blog is about writing. It does incorporate my personal life, attitudes, beliefs, etc. At the end of the day, I employ the separation of church & state. If my breakfast is pertinent to the discussion, then I'll use it. But, I always write my blogs with my current, future & intended audiences in mind.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

As a poetry writer I write what I feel and what has happened in my life albiet now or in the past.
I used to be very shy and wouldn't /couldn't speak my mind, but am quite assertive now and If I know I am right will fight all the way......and I have won.

Have a great weekend.

Elspeth Antonelli said...

Thanks for the links, Patricia! I'm not afraid of public speaking and I was an actress for years, but my idea of hell is still having to walk into a room of strangers and make conversation. *shiver*

Patricia Stoltey said...

Good morning (and in some cases, afternoon) everyone. I'm loving this discussion.

Yes, I am an introvert, but one who pushes on through her fears and anxieties and does it anyway. It's hard, especially those parties with all strangers that Elspeth mentioned. Conferences are kind of the same as a party, except on a big scale. I've learned how to walk right up and talk to strangers, but I'll never feel comfortable doing it.

The thing that intimidates me the most is a solo book signing, which is why I haven't done very many. I'd almost rather have someone shave my head. Almost.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

I used to be an introvert but having to promote and give talks and be on panels has changed me. I think that social media: Facebook and blogs are important--but when doing anything whether in person or on line, the author needs to remember to be nice. Oh yes, I've run into authors who weren't and no, I'm not going to buy their books--ever.

Bob McDonnell said...

Great topic. It makes me thing of the times I took the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test while at Hewlett-Packard. (Took it 2-3 times in my career with the same result every time)

The first indicator of four, is whether
you are and I or E. I was always an I.

Many mislabeled this trait as introversion. Actually, it is more on the line of introspection. I can live with that.

As an "I", I like to thing things over and not share them right away or in full. Or, so says my wife.

We are what we are--enjoy it.

Monti said...


Wonderful post as usual. I think I'm an introvert, but I really do enjoy being around children in a classroom. That's when my extrovert pops out!

I actually started writing blog posts with the idea of promoting my books, but I've gotten so interested in writing about lots of things that I've done almost no promotion! I read somewhere about a 12 to 1 ratio--write 12 things about something else to every one you write to promote your own books. That sounds like a good formula, but I don't know if it works.


Kay Theodoratus said...

At least Theodosia isn't a shrinking violet. Thanks for the link.

Simon Hay Soul Healer said...

Commenting here is a form of social media marketing, but I like you. I want to visit and see what you've been up to. It's like peeping in your window without the creepy stuff. I bought one of your books because I like you, and I reviewed it because it lets people peep in my window - Hi I'm Simon, give me a minute to put my pants on, oh by the way this book by Pat's pretty cool.

I'd rather say a kind word about someone than to rant and sell myself. I don't think you should market your product online, market yourself, let people notice you first, but be authentic. The best author interviews are the ones that don't mention the book.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Simon, I totally agree. If we can connect with folks around the world this way, help our fellow authors and readers by introducing them to our online friends, and discuss "stuff" that's fun, interesting, and sometimes touching, then there's a reason to be here that has little to do with self-promotion.

You're one of the wonderful friends I've made online, and I have to thank writing for making that happen. I would never have put myself out here and been so blessed if not for the books.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Promotion suggestion? Um, don't underestimate your target audience's size - it may reach pass your genre.

And while I'll see a movie alone if I absolutely have to, I never eat alone. Too weird.

Patricia Stoltey said...

That made me laugh out loud, Alex. I always felt weird for enjoying the solitary experience, but I do enjoy it. I often traveled for work, and I hated hiding in my hotel room, so the restaurant experience turned into an adventure. I still sneak away for solo lunches from time to time, especially since my hubby and I prefer dinner time at home.

Jemi Fraser said...

I'm definitely an introvert, but in some situations I've learned to fake being an extrovert pretty well! I know I'll find marketing hard... if I ever get to the point where I need to market! :)

Arlee Bird said...

I have been accused of being outgoing and friendly, but actually I'm pretty much of an introvert. Don't do real well at parties all of the time, but I'm usually pretty good in business situations.

When meeting the public smile, be nice, and act interested in whomever you are talking with and you should leave a pretty good impression about you and your product.

Tossing It Out

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I'll have to read that one about the social media and promotion. Here's my suggestion to authors - don't mention your book or your website every time you comment! You'll annoy far more than you interest.

The Old Silly said...

Thanks for the heads-up on the blog. I likey. As for a pithy comment for self-promotion, The Old Silly would never be so shameless to stoop to doing anything like that - not even for his new novel, Beware the Devil's Hug that readers can buy by just clicking right here. (wink)

KK Brees said...

Hi Patricia, Just back from daughter's wedding and catching up on your blog. As usual, it's spot on. I can't wait to join my fellow (fellowette) introverts.

irishoma said...

There's nothing wrong with being an introvert. I think those of us who are introverts are comfortable with ourselves, which is a good thing.

Your panel discussion sounds great!

My advice for a marketing tip is: Take the self out of self-marketing. Join forces with one or more writers for author appearances or book signings.

Donna V.