Before I go on, I’d like to introduce you to the Erotic Author’s Guild. Like the Author’s Guild, there are member benefits to joining. There will be resources for members that are not available outside the guild as well as a directory of services.
Now, on the blog of the guild, there will be a post tomorrow on Platform building. It’s probably one of the most difficult and time consuming things an author has to do in the new paradigm.
Along the lines of platform building, I’d like to chat with you about interacting with other’s, and more specifically, other authors. I get a large number of Facecrack friend requests each and every day. I accept nearly all of them, and will until I reach my limit. But what comes directly after is usually very frustrating. It seems I get one of the following:
- I find you very attractive and I’m a lonely sort of person so please talk to me.
- Hey, I know you don’t know me, but here’s a buy link to my book.
- Sign this petition. (No info, just a link.)
- Hi! We just me. Go like my fan page.
Le sigh. This is not friendly. This is not a great introduction. Personally, I don’t send a private message the minute someone accepts my friend request. It seems…invasive to me. Unless, of course, a friend suggested I contact that person for a specific reason. (A recommendation/referral etc.)
But today, I opened up my private message folder braced for one of the four examples above. And oh, 3 were there. Thankfully, no one was lonely. But the fourth message…the fourth was a proper introduction from Simar. I’ve asked his permission to share this publicly because I honestly care about you, my community. I hate to see you dishing out spam sammies and thereby making the general population equate you to a used car salesman. He’s granted me permission to share a bit of it, though not the entire email. So here it is:
I remember having read, quite some time ago, a statement in a certain issue of the National Geographic magazine that went something like this: “Strangers are just friends who never met.” Ever since, I have really believed in the idea of exploring the possibility of meaningful friendships with strangers. Here’s one reason why: If I give you a dollar and you give me a dollar, then we are both left with a dollar each. But if you give me an idea and I give you an idea, we are left with two ideas each. Looking forward to an exchange where we are left with two ideas each, I welcome you to open our friendship with a topic of your choosing, and, with kind regards, remain…
This is not the entire body of the private message. It was longer. A long message, which I normally wouldn’t spend the time reading (because those are usually garbage.) And while I’m not racist by any stretch of the imagination, I do get a lot of inappropriate emails from men who look a lot like Simar, making me very wary of accepting those friend requests, especially when we have zero friends in common.
But this man was a total gentleman AND professional. Note, he didn’t ask anything from me. He didn’t try to sell me his book. He didn’t try to sell me ANYTHING. He just wanted a professional introduction and perhaps some dialogue.
Learn from this man, people. THIS is how you do it. What I loved most (and re-read a few times) is this: But if you give me an idea and I give you an idea, we are left with two ideas each. Looking forward to an exchange where we are left with two ideas each.
Even as a foul mouthed erotica author, there HAS to be a level of professionalism because this is a career. This is what I’m going to be doing 30 years from now. I take this very seriously. Don’t market to other authors – WE are not your target demographic.