You’re a writer, you know how it is. You write your book. You push it to agents. Nobody wants to represent it because, well, maybe it’s not that good of a book. Maybe it IS good, but not marketable. That’s what Disney told me.
I had an agent tell me “you should publish this yourself.”
Did so. Well, published this book instead: Droppington Place. But then I sat down and rewrote the book in question, which I have yet to push out to the agently world. That book is this book: Marigold’s End.
Boom – did you see how I did that, there? You notice that here, in the top quarter of my post, I’ve already pitched two products. Boom. Huh? You, my friend, have already been marketed to. Zimzam, what was that? What did it take?
That’s Gorilla Marketing at its best.
Okay, so, contrary to the Gorilla Marketing tenet of “do no work,” I did a little bit of work, and now have something to show you: PhineasCaswell.com.
“Wha… what’s happening?” you exclaim, your mind a whirl of sudden marketing impact. Boom, two books, zimzam, a website, just like that. Whoa. Sit down, my friend, lest you explode or something.
All right, all seriousness aside, if you have a minute, click on the PhineasCaswell.com link – there it is again. Open it in a new window so that you don’t miss any of my glorious words here.
Why is this a big deal? Because, if you publish your own book, you are responsible for marketing it. You need a website to give yourself some bottom – make yourself available for your readers. And, unless you yourself are a web designer, this can be a challenge.
I gave up trying to be a web designer as well as a marketer, an author, a technical writer/illustrator, a videographer, all in addition to being a loving husband and father.
First was Open Element, which gives you free, open-source web design software, with templates that seem to be “responsive” – you know, works well on cell phones as well as desktops. But the software is so so so so so very hard to navigate, and the stuff it seems like you really need? Well, that’s in French, you see…
Next came, Serif, a British company that makes a terrific web design suite. It’s quite inexpensive, but not yet quite up to the challenge of responsive web design.
Then came Google Web Design, which worked for a minute, but I couldn’t figure out the language to navigate their templates… OMG, my website looked ghastly! Like a commercial for Google!
However, GoDaddy, who carries my hosting, has a nifty WordPress plug-in. As above, boom, zimzam, etc, now PhineasCaswell.com is a nice, responsive website, looking equally cool on desktops, tablets and phones (marketers take note: that was yet another link).
Brag about the site though I should, I’m passing on to you, my valued reader, that WordPress seems to be really good at making a responsive website. That means that you don’t have to be.
One little nasty surprise does seem to come with a WordPress plug-in: the SSL certificate. If you haven’t got one of these, your WordPress site actually scares viewers away with a big warning that your site is not safe. I paid $75 to get my certificate. If you don’t pay the $75, you appear to the world as a creepy underworld scum, out to steal passwords. Seems as if there’s a piratical side to fighting pirates that just might be worse…
But you, my marketing self-publishing writer friend, that’s the big news for you, should you be looking for an easy way to build a backend for your authorial effort.
To those who were paying attention, I dropped Phineas Caswell as my nom de plume, and have published both novels under my own name. Not such a big deal for you, but a whopper for me!