What writers want.
Whilst procrastinating the other day I knocked up one of those memes you see on Twitter. The idea behind it, ‘What writers want you to do’ wasn’t particularly original but it seemed to strike a chord on Twitter.
The things I put on there are probably universal but they are also personal to me. Below I explain in a little more detail.
Buy our books – A few quid could make all the difference.
This may sound obvious but as an author, I like to sell books. I don’t make a great deal of money per book and I’m never going to get rich from books sales alone however it always gives me a little boost when I see one of my books racing up the charts.
All mine are available by clicking the links on this website or visitimg my page on Amazon. Alan Parkinson
Leave reviews – They really matter.
We all rely on reviews when making purchases but how many of us actually leave them? I’m getting better at it now that I know how important it is and writers value a review almost as much as a sale, possibly more if it’s a five star one.
It only takes a couple of minutes and can make a big impact on sales.
Give constructive feedback – We have thick skins and need to improve.
Most writers are easily contactable and we thrive on feedback. Tell us what you like, what you don’t like and what you want to see more of. Idle Threats was written based on feedback from fans of Leg It who wanted to see more of the character Bumper. He was only a relatively minor character and I would never have known how much people liked him.
I can be contacted via this website, on Twitter and on my Facebook page.
Offer us money for workshops, talks and freelance work – Nice to get away from the novels occasionally.
Most days I am sat in the house writing novels or at least thinking about it. I’m more than likely on social media.
To supplement my income from book sales I do workshops, talks and ghost write blogs and magazine articles. It’s a chance to get out and meet new people and pass on what I’ve learnt over the years.
I get a lot of repeat business so I must be doing something right, feel free to get in touch if you have something in mind.
Read and comment on our blogs. – They’re free.
You’re reading this blog so you are halfway there. I don’t just write about writing, I have humorous etiquette guides and idiot guides to the Olympics as well as a few other random subjects that take my fancy.
Comments are always welcome and we always appreciate it when blogs are shared.
Once I’d done the meme on what writer’s want, I realised there was a flip side and potentially a more controversial one, ‘What writers don’t want you to do.’
Ask us to write your ideas – Or JK Rowling’s, she’s already done it.
If you have a great idea, have a go at writing it yourself. I have a notebook with hundreds of ideas, I don’t want to steal yours. I also don’t think I’ll get far writing the ‘new Harry Potter’ or ‘a modern take on Sherlock’ both of which have been suggested.
Recently I was told ‘what you should write your novels about is the burglars around here.’ As it happens, hapless criminals do appear in my books but I’m not a newspaper.
Ask us to work for ‘exposure’ – Would you work for free?
This is a common one. I’m a nice bloke and if a friend needs a favour, I’ll help them out. I’ve done free work for selected charities, I’ve put far more hours in than I’ve been paid for on projects and I’m often available for free advice and guidance. This doesn’t mean that you can ask me to work for free.
The people who tend to offer ‘exposure’ rarely offer more than I get from my own blogs and even if they were hugely successful with millions of followers, they should be able to pay.
Ask what our proper job is. – This is it.
This is my only source of income. I may not go to an office each day and I may not earn as much as I used to but that doesn’t mean that I take it any less seriously than you do. It may not be conventional but I’ve done conventional for a lot of years.
I’ve been a full time writer for two and a half years now, this is my career.
Tell us where you downloaded our book for free. – We’re not going to be held responsible for the dodgy virus you’ve just downloaded.
Amazingly people still proudly tell me that they have managed to save themselves £1.99 by downloading one of my books for free from a dodgy site in China. I’m not sure why people think it is fine to steal from me but I have no idea why they think I would care that the dodgy copy they have downloaded is riddled with viruses.
If you have anything you’d like to add to the list, please comment below.
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