Face it. There is something about marketing that turns the mildest mannered writer, previously obsessed with the cadence of each exquisitely wrought sentence, into a publicity-crazed doofus prepared to follow any old ridiculous promotional advice on the bouncy path to self-destruction.
And here I am, offering the most ridiculous advice ever! Is this perfect, or what?
For those sceptics among you who cry, "Wait, Clueless One, you have 79 people following your blog. Why in the name of all that is holy -- or (backup plan) reasonable -- should I listen to you on this critical topic?"
To which I reply, for Pete's sake, dog, since when is the dispensing of really bad writing advice limited to people who actually write? Extrapolate.
Anyway, these are not original ideas! No indeed, they are ripped off from actual gurus of book promotion, some of whom have even formulated their own ingenious pyramid schemes. Top that.
1.) You should trade follows (or membership, or friendship, or whatever) with vast numbers of random strangers who blog. You can find them everywhere: Conferences, Linkedin, accosting old ladies on street corners. Soon you will be following 600 blogs in which your interest level is somewhere between zilch and nada, and 600 similarly indifferent followers will swell your ranks. (BTW, this single piece of advice is worth at least bazillion dollars , but I will expand on it for free if you'll purchase my handy dandy book promotion boot camp kit. Yee-ha!)
Helpful hint: Anyone who searched for a link to the aforementioned handy dandy kit should immediately turn off the computer and get a friend to tie you to a tree for your own good.
2.) Express your desperation on every platform known to man. Tell everyone on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Tumbler et al that they must join up immediately. Hyperventilate as best you can in writing. It helps if you express a lot of bitterness, as obviously you would have thousands upon thousands of follows already if only a.) people weren't prejudiced against indies; b.) your publisher gave you a modicum of support; c.) people weren't so busy reading trash about vampires that they don't appreciate the beauty of zombies (reverse if you write about zombies).
3.) Offer a large bribe. Promise that the second you reach some totally reasonable six figure number of followers, you will do a giveaway of a classic Bentley/ your first-born child/ the deed to the Brooklyn Bridge. People love a large bribe. Oh yeah, definitely put your publicity budget into that.
4.) Post comments on other people's blogs that don't actually have much of anything to do with whatever the hell they're nattering on about, which you are to praise in a fulsome yet generic manner, given that you didn't actually read said nattering. Be sure to mention how they and all their followers should head on over to your blog and join up. Be sure to post a bunch of links and explain how your blog was once called the most moving and insightful thing he'd ever read while driving by J.K. Rowling's cousin's podiatrist when he was visiting Chattanooga.
Be sure to return often and post repeatedly with teensy weensy variations. There is no telling how many people will join just to get you to shut up.
But then, the more people hope and pray you'll shut up and go away, the better job you're doing!
Happy trails, and be sure to join my blog early and often if you want to win your very own exotic Middle Eastern country!
My work here is done.