The Importance of Personal Blogs, Profiles and Author Sites
by Theresa Snyder
Getting your name out there is a major key to an author’s success. It is paramount that you create and maintain an author blog and website. There are several tools you can use to push readers to your sites.
I have had a blog for years. I enjoy blogging and appreciate the 29,000 folks worldwide who support it by reading. When I first started, it was just a story blog that I faithfully posted to on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Posting regularly and with something of interest is one key to building a consistent following. From the beginning, I have alternated between posting a sci-fi story and a fantasy. I am pleased to say that every month or so it picks up 1,000 new hits.
I recently put an email capture for a newsletter on my blog. I have not printed one yet, but when I finish posting my books on Smashwords, I will make a general announcement using the newsletter to tell my readers the books are available on multiple platforms. I have heard other authors say, “I wish I had put an email capture on my blog much sooner.” In my case, I missed the first 10,000 readers.
When I first started, I could not afford a Web host. I bought my website name, TheresaSnyderAuthor.com, anyway. I redirected this link to the blog, hence my site is my blog. It has grown over the years and many things have been added.
There are links to all the books, a link to all my interviews, podcasts and guest blogs. All my social links are listed here. There is a link to my “After Thoughts,” which is simply musings about general things that interest me. It is my writing life on a page. Currently, my dear techie friend is creating a landing page with links so it will appear a bit cleaner. Essentially, if I get a reader to come here, they have all they need to read, buy and get to know me as an author.
Once you have your blog or site set up then you can branch out, but don’t drive folks to those other author sites. It can be beneficial to place your profile on any number of sites on the Internet. You will be there if someone is searching, but you still want to drive them to your site. Spending time building author sites such as GoodReads, iAuthor, Wattpad, and Bubblish can prove very useful. I have a presence on some of these sites, which means if someone is just surfing the site they may bump into me.
I have had the opportunity to build two other sites with fellow authors. This hopefully helps us all because of the draw of multiple authors to a site.
The Twin Cities project was formed Christmas of 2013. Another author wanted to get four or five authors together to write a series of books set in the same location with the same set of rules, much like the multiple authors writing the Star Trek series.
Five of us bought into his idea. It is called the Twin Cities Series and we chose it to be a setting of the imagination. The Realms is the place where the creatures live which humans think are paranormal, mythological, or fanciful. It was my first dive into paranormal and I love it. The series is a commitment for all of us. We look at it as something that can evolve and change with us as we grow as writers. The series does not have a site, but has a Facebook page and a blog that receives regular hits.
The Society of Enlightened Dragonologists is the second multi-author site. This was formed by me and another author to promote dragons as creatures with personalities, rather than just killing machines, as most adult dragon books portray them. We have found that the adults on social media want their dragons friendly and approachable. We aim to please and draw them to our books at the same time. Many authors have joined us on the site and have access to write on the site based on common rules.
Associating with Facebook pages, blogs or sites that have readers who might be interested in your work is a great idea, but remember to drive your tweets and social media to your site, not someone else’s. A reader could get distracted by other “bright, shiny authors.”
Theresa Snyder is a multi-genre writer with an internationally read blog. She grew up on a diet of black-and-white, sci-fi films like Forbidden Planet and The Day the Earth Stood Still. She is a voracious reader and her character-driven writing is influenced by the early works of Anne McCaffrey, Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein and L. Ron Hubbard. This is the fifth installment of her column for VoiceCatcher on self-publishing.