Even though I don't yet have a book deal of my own, I set up the New Jersey Authors' Network, a free to join, free to use online database, where authors can get together for multi-author signings in New Jersey. I did it, partly to help other writers sell their books, but also because, one day, I hope to use it to sell mine.
I designed the network to function without me, and it's already doing just that. People I've never met use it to organize events at places I'd never been to, with other member-authors who I don't yet know.
Then there's this blog. I thoroughly enjoy reading other writers' journals and posting my own thoughts about the craft, but for me, a blog is more than just a social networking tool. I believe a writer's journal can have a huge impact on his or her book sales. Sure, the book has to be worth reading, but isn't getting the word out the biggest challenge for an unknown author?
If that's true, then the bigger the blog's readership, the better. Now I'm sure there are examples of previously unheard of writers whose blogs were an overnight success, for most of us, it takes time, effort, and a definite plan of action.
How do you develop a large readership?
I would say the answer is "On purpose."
I don't know about you, but I apply the same logic to my journal entries as when I'm writing a story ie: if I can make it entertaining enough and/or interesting enough, people will want to read it. Of course, unlike me, that's not as simple as it appears. You have to promote yourself too, otherwise you could write the most brilliant blog entries the world has ever seen, but no-one will know, so I'm working on that side of things too.
Am I being presumptious by assuming I'll get published? Possibly (I know my old gran would think so), but if I do ever get to hold a book deal in my hot little hands, I plan on having the benefit of a successful journal to help me launch my novel on an unsuspecting public. Even if that never happens, I'm having great fun with my online friends.
How about you?
What are your long term plans for your journal?
Why do you blog?