My debut novel, ADORKABLE, comes out on March 31, 2016! That’s next week ICYMI (hip-hip hooray!!!), and to keep from freaking out too much, I’ve been doing some research. I found this article by Kimberly Grabas that said to market your book you have to:
1) Know Yourself.
2) Know Your Audience.
Now, I’m probably the worst marketer in the history of indie publishing. Besides being an introvert (I’ve discovered this carries over into online interactions as well. Just my luck!), a first-time self-pubbing author (again, fun times, but man…the learning curve is steep), and just an overall awkward person (to quote Lady Gaga, “Baby, I was born this way”), marketing myself has never been easy. It’s like constantly fighting a battle against my inner-Self Doubt/Critic–and she is a nasty piece of work. Never shuts up, always present, always trying to hold me back.
But regardless, this article helped me. I may be crap at marketing, but I do know myself and my audience. So, let me break it down.
I write YA. I write in this genre because I love young adult books. My high school years, though filled with way-too-much Awkward (yes, with a capital “A”), were some of the best years of my life. Middle school sucked. Period. But in high school, I had a great group of friends that were a total mixed bag. Some were over achievers; some were popular; some were boy crazy; most were bandies or drama geeks–and all of them were true friends. None of them ever stabbed me in the back, and that’s why in my books you’ll read about real BFFs, who have each others’ backs, who would go to war together and fight off the monsters and mean girls/guys. Those were the friends I knew growing up. So, those are the friends I write.
I write romance. Not only that, I strive to write believable happily-ever-after romance because, in my opinion, real life sucks enough. There are too many tragic endings. If my characters are going to live, they will struggle. They will go through some awful times, sometimes physically, sometimes emotionally, because that’s just life. But in the end, they’ll come out on top. In the movie Becoming Jane, Anne Hathaway put it like this, “My characters, after a little trouble, shall have all that they desire.” So yeah, this. Absolutely, one hundred times this.
I write for the nerd in all of us. This is not just a line. I’m a nerd–which basically just means that I like things and get excited about life (see John Green’s quote below). I love nerdy people, passionate people, the ones who may be awkward but are excited by life and books and movies and music. And if they love Harry Potter, well…those are my people.
I also write for the girls/guys who are in love and too afraid to speak up. I write for the teens experiencing love for the first time and the adults who want to experience it again. Being in love, it is beauty and torture all wrapped up together. In my books, it’s not so much about “if” the characters will end up together. It’s about “how.” I write the journey, the first kiss, the misunderstandings, how the heart breaks, and how we piece it back together.
So, this is me. Why I write, what I write, and the readers who I’m writing for.
I hope you’re one of them :).