A Writer or a Marketer?

speakerA writer or a marketer? I once heard a woman speak at a writers’ conference in the States. Since I had read her book and enjoyed it, I hoped she would use her speech to announce a new work. After all, it had been four years since her previous work. I had to pay an extra $40 to attend the dinner and her talk.

After a $7.99 dinner, she took the podium to polite applause. Here it comes I thought the announcement of her next novel. She told of her adventures selling her book from city to city – New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle, LA and many others. She traveled by car from city to city, from bookstore to bookstore, from dinner speech to campus talk. I knew from her stories that her travels had eaten up the years. No announcement. No new book. Damn.

What are we – writers or marketers?  I think we have to be both, but in what proportion?  Everyone is different, but I hope the ratio favors the writer part.

I’m 90% writer and 10 % marketer. That’s not good. I have to work on marketing.

How about you? A writer or a marketer? What are you and in what proportion?

marketingquestion markwriter



Images courtesy of:

  • impactfactory.com
  • jumpmarketing.com.au
  • damyantiwrites.wordpress.com
  • boxofficeindia.co.in

11 responses to “A Writer or a Marketer?

  1. In today’s writing world, we need to find a balance between the act of writing and the other stuff that goes with producing that work: marketing, publishing, readings, social media, and perhaps teaching.

    It is a constant struggle but eventually we will all find our balance, our equilibrium through a process of shifting the various degrees of these things around. It differs depending on where you are in a particular project.

    At the end of the day you have to remember that writing must be given the most weight of any of these factors, for it is the cornerstone of everything for the writer. Recently, I have found myself spending to much time away from my writing as I am focused on my other various writing ‘jobs’: lots of readings, lots of prep for teaching, teaching and critiquing. But no time for writing. Time to shift my thought process and give weight to that which matters the most: the writing.

    I’ve learned that while these other things need to be done I need to limit myself to how much time I spend on them each day, each week.

    Once again Ed, a timely post for me in my writing journey.

  2. Ed,
    Great post! Marketing is something I definitely need to work on. I lack the time and partly the knowledge. This is something I am trying to work on, it’s difficult to figure out which marketing strategies work best.

  3. I’m with David here. I think marketing is important – and that means social media – but a writrer must guard their time. I’ve just spent 4 months learning social media. Previously I was one of those ‘precious’ writers who said, “Ooh, I’m a very private person’. I had no desire to engage in any form of social media – and I must admit that, even now, if I woke up tomorrow to find that the internet had been destroyed never to be revived, I’d go out and buy champagne. But once I’d decided to publish my novel in 2013, I realised that I could no longer live the life I’d been living, so free from all that timeconsuming network clutter. It’s been a steep learning curve and I”m still learning. To what extent it will pay off, only time will tell. If I find out next year that it doesn’t pay off, I’ll be out of there like a shot, notwithstanding all the lovely people I’ve met.

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