Everyday Spirituality

Author-platforms are designed to sell books. Standard platform strategies emphasize a strong presence on the internet. Websites and blogs are created to generate interest in authors writing. Videos are made and uploaded. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social domains are joined and kept lively. E-mail lists are collected, and blasts are sent out.

Author-platforms also urge writers to schedule book signings and public appearances.

As an author who has self-published several books, I’ve followed through on these platform strategies.

Along with a few book signings and public appearances, in 2006, I developed a website and blog. I began making and uploading videos. I also joined social media. But after a few years, I backed-off working online. Why?

The numbers. The numbers changed from fewer authors online to many authors. Since 2006, the numbers of new book titles, websites, videos, and blogs continues to multiply nearly exponentially, crafting an image of fierce competition on the internet for reader attention.

Basically, selling books online was becoming mega-time-consuming due to the numbers.

As of August 2018,  claims 1,487,538 new book titles have been published this year. There are more than 644 million websites on the internet. To date, user-friendly and free WordPress alone, handles more than 75 million websites and blogs.

Curiously, the numbers inspired me, not to give up, not to try to beat the other authors, but to cooperate.

By lessening my time spent on the internet, I was able to amp-up time spent joining a growing synergy of interaction in the public.

Because I’m not a well-known name, I had to look beyond book signings and speaking.

I began meeting other authors to discuss better writing. I read and appreciate the writings of other authors. I practice better communication with authors and readers alike. How?

Last year, I started vending my books at community festivals and expos.

Festivals and shows are happening all the time. We human beings love to celebrate: the seasons, anniversaries, holidays, baseball, kite flying, food, buying local. We love to share: products, values, and ideas.

Vending supports face-to-face conversations, which satisfy the human desire to connect and understand one another. Trust is strengthened.

A study reported in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology that face-to-face interaction removes suspicion.

Not to be forgotten is the author-platform strategy of attending conferences such as Writing For Your Life. At these gatherings it’s supremely obvious that I’m not alone. Authors write because it feels right. We use writing as a means to clarify and express life lessons, to encourage others, and to heal.

Writing helps us know who we are. We are spirited, resilient, creative, interested, and interesting. Sure, it’s nice to sell a few books in the meantime, and I think, expanded face-to-face activities strengthens the prospects.


Bio: Cheryl Petersen lives in Warwick, New York. Her books are, I Am My Father-Mother’s Daughter, from science & religion to God, and, 21st Century Science and Health: A revision of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health.

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