Writers Write creates and shares writing resources. In this post, we share advice from American novelist, Orson Scott Card on building an audience.
Orson Scott Card (born 24 August 1951) is an American author, critic, public speaker, essayist, columnist, and political activist.
He is best known for his science fiction books, which include his novel Ender’s Game, and its sequel, Speaker for the Dead, both won Hugo and Nebula Awards. His most recent series are the young adult Pathfinder series and the fantasy Mithermages series.
Card is also a professor of English at Southern Virginia University, and he has written two popular books on creative writing: Characters & Viewpoint, and How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy. He says: “…the reason that many writers keep well-thumbed copies [of these books] close by, is that I give serious practical advice. No literary theories, no fancy art.”
We found a great interview with Card on Writer’s Digest and we wanted to share this information from the interview on how to build an audience.
Orson Scott Card On Building An Audience
“Write stories you care about and believe in. Chances are that there are other people who believe in and care about the same kinds of stories — as long as you’re writing them clearly enough that they realise that’s what they’re getting.
Word of mouth is still the only effective means of spreading the word, but having the right cover displayed prominently in the bookstores can also give your book a readership jolt.
But the truth is, the only way to build an audience is to keep writing books and getting them published. Book 1 is not a career, it’s not even the start of a career, it’s just the first foot in the door. If your writing is good, and you’re telling good stories, each book builds on the success of the previous ones and your audience grows across time.
Encourage your readers to lend your books any chance they get. I’ve heard of writers who actually get angry at people who borrow books instead of buying them, but those writers are boneheads. A lent book can bring you a lifelong reader. They may not have bought that copy of your book, but if they like what you write, they’ll buy later ones!”
Read the full interview here: Writer’s Digest
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