It's not easy being a writer. It's less easy being an editor. And it's even less easy being a publisher.
It all comes down to promotion.
buy my book. Buy My Book. BUY MY BOOK.
Some days it feels like all I'm telling people to do: on social media, at events, at the day job, is to buy my fucking book. I'm not desperate, but as a writer I want to be read. And as editor/publisher I want those people I've put my time (and money) into, to be read. Because those writers I've been involved in publishing also want to be read. They want people to buy their book. And those books are damn good or I wouldn't be involved with them. But it's not a simple matter of making folk aware of those books, they won't sell simply because people are aware of them. You have to convince them using all possible outlets. And because these are usually social media which I also like to be...well...sociable...on, then half the time I'm convincing my mates to buy books. Or at least asking them to forward my pleads to their mates. Etc. It's a bit embarrassing.
I know it's hard. I have many writers who are my friends on social media and I'm sure they want their books buying too. And I have bought books from many of those. But I can't buy all their books. I have over 270 on my reading pile as it is. So I'm not expecting all my friends to lavishly buy my books, nor assist in promoting them, because they're in the same boat. And the number of books bought by the general public is painfully few. So how do you reach outside that circle and grab readers by the throat, how can you convince people that what you write, edit, or publish is worth their time and money? How do you get stuff into the imaginations of the ordinary reading public?
In short, I dunno, so here instead is a post pleading with you to buy one of the following books. It's all about promotion, isn't it?
First up, with my partner we run Salò Press. Our second book, a collection of poems titled Father, Husband by Scherezade Siobhan, has just been published and it desperately needs your love. These are urgent, complex poems. Let it be your impulse buy, your Christmas present to the friend who is always difficult to buy for, your own secret Santa. Take a look at the cover and read this.
Secondly, not only do we publish books but a magazine, Fur-Lined Ghettos. The seventh issue has just been published and is also desperate for your love. We have some weird shit in here. Don't take my word for it, here's a sample:
Thirdly, I edited an anthology of punk-themed fiction which was published by DogHorn Publishing earlier this year, titled punkPunk!. You don't have to be a punk to enjoy it, and you don't have to have been a punk to enjoy it. Don't take my word for it, here are a few snippets from Goodreads reviews: "one of the best books to come out of the indie scene that I have ever read" and "original and refreshing examples of contemporary fiction". There's also a full review here. Again, this is a book which deserves some love. There must be an old punk in your life who would like an off-the-wall Christmas present. This is ideal. Show that you care.
And finally, I must plug my stuff. I've written heaps over the years, but I'm focussing on neo-noir crime for the novels right now. A couple of those have been published and I have a couple waiting in the wings - but they won't get there unless these ones sell. That's the long and the short of it. So, once again, they also need your love. Have a crime reader in the family who avidly reads crime but you can't remember which Ian Rankin, Patricia Cornwell or Lee Child book they haven't got yet? Then introduce them to something new. Me! The latest of mine is Church of Wire. Here's a snippet: "He walked up to Miss Pretty and gave her a smile which hit like a bird against a window". It's also on Kindle. You can't go wrong.
But then if you've read this, you probably know all the above already. You might even have bought something from me before. But if you haven't, then just take a punt. Try some noir crime, some punk, some intelligent poetry, some experimental prose, some WORDS. Buy something and make me happy.