Thursday, April 28, 2011

BUT WHO WILL I BE?

Current Project: Nine-book LEGACY series
Status: edits on Book #1


I was so inspired by Paty's post yesterday that I drafted a slide show for the first book of my upcoming series. Way ahead of the curve on this, as the first book won't be released until March 2012 and I don't plan to launch promotion until the holidays are out of the way at the end of this year.

However, I'm excited about this series and the potential for promotion. And there are enough books to build momentum and gather new readers with each release.

This will be another aspect that's new for me: promotion for each book will build on the one before. And characters introduced in the first books will continue to grow and change in later books, though the focus won't necessarily be on them.

The idea of an "author persona" is another area Paty mentioned that I feel I need to address. Sarah and Barb also talked a bit about this topic last week when they discussed finding a niche for your books.

This is a tough area for me. I don't generally like photos of myself, so how am I supposed to become a tough cookie like J.D. Robb or a softer version Nora Roberts?

The blog site I share with three other authors uses an avatar for me which is younger and more slender, so that's great fun. However, I want to use that graphic image exclusively for novellas done with others in our group of Rogue's Angels.

So I'm back to the task of finding an author persona that's natural/ comfortable enough for me to maintain in public, but interesting enough--or unusual enough--to support sales of my books. (No, I don't plan to become a Sunday School teacher who writes erotica. :)

Have any of you come up with an author persona you're comfortable with? Does it match the niche your books fill? Paty has the Western theme for her books and lives that life, so what a natural fit!

And does it matter? As a reader, does an author's persona affect whether you buy their books or not? If I meet an author and they are a nice person with books that sound interesting, I will buy their books. Not sure their "persona" comes into play or not. Perhaps subconsciously. Although I know the reverse is definitely true. If I meet an author who is rude or obnoxious, I will NOT buy their books. (Fortunately, I haven't run into many of those.)

Until I find my elusive author persona, I'll continue to write the best books I can dressed in paint-spattered shirts or pants with dog hair on them. And occasionally I'll dress up and venture out in public to try out a new persona. Sooner or later, I'll find one that fits perfectly!

3 comments:

Paty Jager said...

Genene, Your persona is the you, you present to your readers who has the look and feel your books/writing represent. And it's to have continuity throughout your marketing. the image you display as you the author needs to mesh with all the other marketing you do for your products.

I haven't read your nine book series but from what you've said about them, you could go with something a little tough and edgy- but not to the extent of biker leathers. LOL I think you should be dressed like Beckett on Castle and not smile. A detective type look.

Genene Valleau said...

LOL, Paty! Since I don't watch TV (though I have heard of Castle) I looked up images of Castle and Beckett on the Internet to see her style. I could go with that--just need to kick up the yoga a bit more to lose the rest of this extra weight. (Yes, it really helps!) I felt the difference the first day of this new online yoga class. On day 8 of the class, I'm lagging back at about day 3 or 4, but can work at my own pace, so it's all good.

But I digress. Thanks for the suggestion, Paty. I even have the clothes for this "look" when I get back to a healthier, leaner me. :) And the look would fit my nine-book series. In the meantime, I have Photoshop, so I could airbrush my face, switch the body with some different clothes...

Sarah Raplee said...

Paty clarified this for me in her comment, Genene. I've been struggling a bit to apply the info to myself, too. :)