As writers, we’re encouraged to blog. Our blog should be a platform-building, audience-enhancing tool. The rub is the time we spend blogging is a time not spent on our book. Is there a way to do both at once?
Can We Blog Our Book? Assume we’ve written our book. We have a publishing deal and are marching towards our release date, or we are looking for an agent and publisher. Can we begin to post segments of our book to sell books, heighten anticipation, or gain attention? Yes, as long as we’re careful—and knowing that publishers will object if they think it will hurt sales.
Can We Book Our Blog? In this scenario, we start with our blog, write our book in small segments, and incrementally post them for the world to see. The benefits are receiving immediate feedback, honing our book’s concept and theme, discovering and correcting problems, and developing our voice. We hope a publisher (or agent) will stumble upon it, love our work, and offer us a book deal. Some writers have found success doing just that, but the majority of blog-to-book authors have not.
Be Careful: Of course, if we blog the entire book, why would a publisher want to produce it, and why would a reader want to buy it? This is a problem. A better solution is to blog some of our books, but we shouldn’t post all of it. Leave readers wanting more.
Blogging our book and booking our blog works best with memoir and lends itself well to nonfiction, but what about fiction? Can we blog our book if we’re writing fiction? The answer is “yes” and “no,” which I’ll cover next week.