Are you an author?
If you are, you rock. Let’s get that out of the way first. Those who put pen to paper (or fingers to keys) in the pursuit of creating literature are contributing to humanity. Good on you, and keep it up.
That said… if you’ve been an author in the EFF Facebook group for a while, you know we are pretty strict on our rules about spam, self-promotion, and shilling for other authors. The reasons for this should be pretty clear… we’re a readers group, not a writers’ group, and readers don’t want to be sold to all the time. If we let one author do it, it becomes a mess.
So, what are the specific rules about what an author may not do in our group?
Mostly, if it’s drawing attention to yourself as a writer, or if it could be misconstrued as promotional for yourself or another author, do us a favor please and don’t post it, so we don’t have to police it. But if you need specific guidance, read on:
– Don’t tell us you’re an author. It’s like that guy at the dinner party that has to keep telling everyone what he does for a living. Don’t be that guy. Some people do this every time they post or reply to someone, and it’s obvious they are trying to draw attention to themselves. It’s icky and annoying, and it won’t sell any books for you anyways.
– Don’t link to your book, your blog, your covers, etc.
– Don’t ask for writing advice or opinions. Again, we’re a readers group, not a writers’ group.
– Don’t create posts about others’ books – particularly indie/self-published/small press authors or books. This one might not be obvious, but here’s why: if what you post is positive, it looks like shilling, and even if it isn’t, it invites others who *might* shill to follow suit. If what you were to post about another author is negative… well, that’s just messed up. Why would you do that?
– Don’t have someone else post things for you. It is usually pretty obvious when it happens, and it will get both you and the poster banned. And again, it doesn’t sell books.
– If someone else *does* happen to post about your work in the group without being prompted, do say “thank you!” Don’t use it as an excuse to start selling your whole backlist, just be gracious! (Unless they said something negative, in which case, the best policy is always to say nothing.)
Sounds like authors can’t do much in EFF, doesn’t it? Yep, that’s by design. We’re a group for READERS. Not WRITERS. There are SO many great writers groups out there, and many specifically for fantasy writers. We’re just not one of them.
But you are WELCOME and ENCOURAGED to comment on other’s posts! Share some cool fantasy art! Talk about all things magical and fantastic! Discuss the classics! Be the first to share the latest GoT trailer! There are certainly many things you can contribute to the group that are not promotional for you or someone else. Please just use common sense, and be cool. Don’t try to find some loophole.
There are far better promotional activities you could do, or ask others to do for you, that don’t clutter up our group, and are a way better investment of your limited time. Again, spamming in groups doesn’t sell books. All it does is annoy people.
But hey, you guys post stuff!!!
Once a week, tops, we will feature something in EFF from one of our sponsors, almost always a new release. That pays the bills, and there *are* bills. We spend a lot of money to advertise the group, advertise the website, design stuff, host our app, manage our mailing lists, etc. Please do not ask us to feature your book. Saying no sucks, and we have SO many people asking, we can’t say yes to everyone. We limit promotional stuff to one thing per week, and we schedule stuff out months and months in advance, so when you say “can I post about my 99c sale that starts tomorrow” we just can’t do it, sorry.
Please don’t be mad.
We love authors. We ARE authors. But we’re just not a place for you to promote yourself. Think of it this way: if someone spends a bunch of money to open up a restaurant, you wouldn’t park a hot dog cart in front of their front door, would ya? Same thing if you spam in our group.
BUT THERE ARE AWESOME WAYS TO GET INVOLVED!
Want to write reviews for the EFF website? If you do, you get to post your byline, links to your author page on Amazon, links to your blog, etc. We will post a link to your review in the group, so you’ll get PLENTY of attention that way! Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested. (It might take a few weeks to get back to you, please be patient!)
We also will soon be rolling out the 2019 Epic Fantasy Fanatics Readers Choice Awards (The EFFys) where you can submit your book to win what we hope will eventually become a VERY prestigious award. (Plus cash, a cool dragon trophy, a 30-second trailer video for your book… yeah, it’s gonna be awesome.)
Stay tuned; we will be announcing more about the EFFys very soon.
On behalf of all of us EFFers, thank you for being an author. You make the world a better, smarter, more magical place by writing fantasy literature. Never, ever stop.