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7 Creative Book Marketing Suggestions

Every writer must think about marketing. Why spend all that time, effort, blood and sweat on something which no one (other than those you emotionally blackmail) will read? You need to think outside the box. So why not…

1. Don’t do the normal postcard advertising your book launch. How about a postcard in the shape of a triangle and something about ‘getting the point’?

 2. Start a blog/Pinterest account/whatever featuring recipes your main character would love. People love recipes. Pictures of food stops people scrolling down the screen.

3. But so do cute pictures of animals. Does one of your characters have a pet? Post pictures of the beast. Also a scroll-stopper.

4. Non-writers are curious about the Secret World of the Writer. Make this shadowy world a feature of your marketing. Why not make a list of music that helps you write? Is there a certain genre that you listen to when you’re writing a first draft? Editing? A romantic scene? A cliff-hanger? Don’t forget about writerly superstitions. Are you someone who has to write your first draft in longhand? Do you tell people what you’re working on? Do you share a title?

5. Many writers (myself included) struggle to find the right title. Do a Pinterest board on The Titles that Never Made It. Yes, make cover art and yes, it can be bad. Let people see the humour in the process. Reveal what working titles you used...even if it’s (like it often is with mine) The Book with No Title or The Book Which I Will Never Finish.

6. Get a book/give a book. Encourage your readers to buy your book for someone else and then for that person to do the same for someone else. This puts word-of-mouth on a whole new level.

7. Give your characters Twitter accounts and let them comment on current issues (or historical issues if that's when they live). Never discount the power of 140 characters.

One more thing...yes, marketing is crucial, but self-promotion is a tricky balancing act. If you’re worried about staying up on that wire, why not take a look at my post “Author Self Promotion: 6 Things to Remember”?

Elspeth Futcher is an author and playwright. Thirteen of her murder mystery games and two audience-interactive plays are published by Her A Fatal Fairy Tale, Deadly Ever After and Curiouser and Curiouser are among the top-selling mystery games on the Internet.  Elspeth's newest game, The Great British Bump Off is now available from her UK publisher, Red Herring Games, as is her Once Upon a Murder. Elspeth's 'writing sheep' are a continuing feature in the European writers' magazine Elias and also appear on this blog from time to time. Connect with her on Twitter at @elspethwrites or on Facebook at Elspeth Futcher, Author.


  1. I like the Twitter idea and people do pay attention to cute kittens and puppies.

  2. I love these ideas, Elspeth! They;re creative, and they keep the author's name 'out there' without being obnoxious.

  3. Again ... all good ideas, Elspeth ... now, if I could just find someone who'd do 'em for me ... for free, of course.

  4. Great suggestions, Elspeth. It is so good to have some new and clever ideas to try.

  5. Fabulous post, Elspeth! I will actually try several of these suggestions, which is a huge plus for me. In fact, some spin-offs of your ideas are already incubating. :-)


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