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'09 Authors Insider Tips

Everything About Epublishing
by Angela James
Digital Publishing & Print
Common Myths of Epublishing
Ebook Formats and Devices


FictionCraft
by Louisa Burton
Compelling Characters
Point of View, Part I
Point of View, Part II
Learning to Love Conflict
Story Structure
Keep ‘em Guessing
Keep it Simple
Keep Your Writing Real
The Importance of Pacing


Literary Streetwalker
by M. Christian
New World of Publishing
To Blog Or Not To Blog
Meeting & Making Friends
Thinking Beyond Sex
Selling Books
Walking the Line
e-book, e-publisher, e-fun
Still More E-book Fun


Shameless Self-Promotion
by Donna George Storey
Our Journey Begins
Pitches and Bios
Websites, Blogs & Readers
Publicists, Press Kits and...
Viva the Internet
Adventures in Cyberspace
Promoting In the Flesh
Make Your Own Movie
Bigger is Better
Looking Back, Planning Ahead


Two Girls Kissing
by Amie M. Evans
Questions to Ask Yourself...
Tough All Over


The Write Stuff
by Ashley Lister
Ideas
Practice Makes Prefect
5 Books for Fiction Authors
Poetry In Motions
Six Serving Men
Ashley Lister is Anal
Stealing Ideas
Celebrating Poetry


2009 Smutters Lounge

Ashley Lister Submits
by Ashley Lister
Myths
Graduation


Cooking Up A Storey
by Donna George Storey
A Year of Living Shamelessly
Adultery, Exhibitionism ...
John Updike Made Me Do It ...
Story Soup: Forbidden ...
Lessons from Amazon
Naked Lunches ...
Erotic Alchemy
Secrets of Seduction
Are You a “Real” Writer?
Don’t Fondle My Sentence


Cracking Foxy
with Robert Buckley
The Passionate Taphophile
Havens on Earth
A Knight Without Armor
Jail-Baiting
Magic Carpet Rides
Getting Hammered
Keep It Quiet
Hang Around for a Spell


Get All Worked Up
with J.T. Benjamin
Worked Up About Why
Worked Up About Why, Part II
All Worked Up About Porn
The Catholic Church
Purity Movement
The National Crisis
The Future
About Homosexuality
Public Indiscretions


Pondering Porn
with Ann Regentin
Premature Ejaculation
Auctioning Off What?


Sex Is All Metaphors
by Jean Roberta
Who's Who Around the Table
Retro-Shame
Ritual Sex
Mixed Legacy
The Spectrum of Consent
Drawing the Line
Marriage without the Hype
The Distracting Smirk
Innocent Guns
Gardens of Earthly Delights


Provocative Interviews

Between the Lines
with Ashley Lister
Anneke Jacob
D L King
Kristina Lloyd
Lisabet Sarai
Mitzi Szereto
Portia Da Costa
Shanna Germain
Sommer Marsden
Susan DiPlacido


Guest Appearances

Marketing a Self-Published Novel
by Jeanne Ainslie

Confessions of a Literary Streetwalker

by M. Christian

Meeting People, Making Friends

 

M ChristianSo now you have a blog (and if you don’t, then why not? See my previous column, To Blog, Or Not To Blog).  What do you do now?

Your immediate instinct might be to start trumpeting the horns and shouting from the rooftops: I HAVE A BLOG!  But I advise restraint. For one thing people coming to your little piece of cyberspace promotion or other fun stuff will find almost nothing there, and two, you should get comfortable running your blog before trying to get people to look it.  Don’t worry about your cool stuff possibly vanishing into the archives, because when you get your audience they will explore all your nooks and crannies.

So a gearing-up period is recommended. How long naturally depends on you and your commitment, your dedication.  After you’re comfortable with the style and maintenance of your blog, then it’s time to start telling folks about it.  One of the easiest ways is to add a link to your site in the footer of your emails, the same with any forum posts you might do.  Friends, of course, should be told when you have your blog up and running, plus any writer circles you might run in. 

But one of the best ways to get the word out is to reach out to sites similar to yours. Offer a link exchange, which means you put a link to them on your site and they do the same to yours.  You can do this easily by sending out emails with a link exchange offer—which is another reason why you should always put your email address on your site (as mentioned), so people can reach out to you, too.  A nice gesture, by the way, is to publicly thank people who agree to reciprocal linking. Yes, that means thank them on your blog, and link to their site when you mention them.

That’s how you make friends, which is what this is all about. Being an erotica writer is all too often a lonely and thankless, if not brutal way of life: no money, little respect, not much recognition, lots of psychological bruising if not outright scarring—the least we can do is try to be nice to one another, to show a little support and kindness to fellow writers, and most of all yourself.

The huge swell of writers, the ongoing collapse—or at best, restructuring—of traditional publishing, and the general economic turmoil have made many people insecure, arrogant, and pointlessly competitive, making a difficult situation needlessly worse.  So, writers and bloggers, please try and be part of a solution and not the problem. Be kinder and more courteous than the majority of self-absorbed publicity machines out there.  Set an example.

Your blog, believe it or not, can help. Work to make it part of a community and not just a platform for self-aggrandizing.  Reach out to people not just for links and traffic numbers but to make real connections: it’s not just a friendly thing to do but connections, especially these days, are tremendously important—no one can afford to let any opportunity pass them by. 

And try to offer help to people who need it.  My Frequently Felt blog is an example: I’ve opened it up to all kinds of people deserving of attention—artists, writers, you name it.  While I do post my own stuff there, I usually reserve most of my promo stuff for my pro site at mchristian.com.  I’ve made some good connections through this site (and Meine Kleine Fabrik as well) but more importantly I’ve made friends, really good friends, that have made the hard life of being a writer much easier, and whom I sincerely hope I’ve helped in return.

You can also help make the blogosphere a better place by not doing something.  Stop giving exposure to people who don’t need it.  It’s very easy to try and curry favor by linking to ‘celebrity’ writers, hoping for some attention in return.  I’m not immune: I used to do the same thing myself.  But then I began to get really frustrated: why should I give attention to someone who ignores my friendly emails, who is clearly playing a much more aggressive game of giving attention to even bigger ‘names,’ and who never seems to do anything but rave about their own successes?  What I guess I’m saying is reward kindness, support, and understanding—not just fame—when you’re working on your own community.

One of the simplest things you can do to build your blog is to be responsive: post comments on other people’s blog posts and email them when you mention them in your own.  If someone writes you, for any reason (well, aside from spam), write them back, even if it’s just a simple “thanks but no thanks.”  If someone comments on your blog, thank them with an email or another comment.  It makes me angry to hear other writers talk about deleting emails when their inbox gets too full—or even, in weird cases, feeling an sense of superiority in not answering messages.  As I just mentioned, opportunities are few and far between, and can come from very unusual directions: today's friendly comment might be tomorrow’s friend, and then a publishing deal sometime down the road.  The reverse is true: will you reach out to people with your new, big, book project who don’t answer your messages, who ignore everyone but themselves, or will you invite your friends, or at least people who treat you with simple respect?

Expect more on this topic next month but hopefully this will get you thinking about your blog, your site, and where you want to go with it.  As always, if you have any questions or comments please feel free to write me at zobop@aol.com—and I promise to write back.

M. Christian
February 2009


Read more of M. Christian's Confessions of a Literary Streetwalker in ERWA 2009 Archive.

______
"Confessions of a Literary Streetwalker" © 2009 M. Christian. All rights reserved.


About the Author: M.Christian is an acknowledged master of erotica with more than 300 stories in such anthologies as Best American Erotica, Best Gay Erotica, Best Lesbian Erotica, Best Bisexual Erotica, Best Fetish Erotica, and many, many other anthologies, magazines, and Web sites. He is the editor of 20 anthologies including the Best S/M Erotica series, The Burning Pen, Guilty Pleasures, and others. He is the author of the collections Dirty Words, Speaking Parts, The Bachelor Machine, and Filthy; and the novels Running Dry, The Very Bloody Marys, Me2, Brushes, and Painted Doll.
Email: M. Christian
Websites: mchristian.com
meinekleinefabrik.blogspot.com
frequentlyfelt.blogspot.com



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'09 Movie Reviews

Blame It On Savanna
Review by Byrdman

Cry Wolf
Review by Spooky

Faithless
Review by Spooky

Heaven or Hell
Review by Oranje

House of Wicked
Review by Diesel

The Office: An XXX Parody
Review by Spooky

This Ain't The Partridge Family
Review by Spooky


'09 Book Reviews

Anthologies

A Slip of the Lip (ebook)
Review by Jean Roberta

Best Women's Erotica '09
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Bottoms Up
Review by Ashley Lister

Enchanted Again
Review by Victoria Blisse

Frenzy
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Girls on Top
Review by Ashley Lister

In Sleeping Beauty’s Bed
Review by Ashley Lister

Libidacoria (Poetry)
Review by Ashley Lister

Licks & Promises
Review by Ashley Lister

Like a Thorn (ebook)
Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Mile High Club
Review by Ashley Lister

Nexus Confessions: Vol 5
Review by Victoria Blisse

Nexus Confessions 6
Review by Victoria Blisse

Oysters & Chocolate
Review by Kristina Wright

Playing with Fire
Review by Ashley Lister

Sexy Little Numbers Vol 1
Review by Ashley Lister

Up for Grabs
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Novels

A 21st Century Courtesan
Review by Donna G. Storey

The Ages of Lulu
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Amanda’s Young Men
Review by Kristina Wright

As She's Told
Review by Ashley Lister

Bedding Down
Review by Victoria Blisse

Broken
Review by Ashley Lister

Brushes & Painted Dolls
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Cassandras Chateau
Review by Ashley Lister

The Edge of Impropriety
Review by Kristina Wright

Exposure
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Free Pass
Review by Ashley Lister

The Gift of Shame
Review by Victoria Blisse

Kiss It Better
Review by Ashley Lister

The Melinoe Project
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Mortal Engines & The ...
Review by Ashley Lister

The New Rakes
Review by Ashley Lister

Ninety Days of Genevieve
Review by Victoria Blisse

Obsession: An Erotic Tale
Review by Kristina Wright

Sarah's Education
Review by Ashley Lister

Seduce Me
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Lesbian Erotica

Lesbian Cowboys
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Night's Kiss
Review by Jean Roberta

Where the Girls Are
Review by Jean Roberta

Gay Erotica

Animal Attraction 2
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Boys in Heat
Review by Vincent Diamond

Faewolf
Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Low Road
Review by Jean Roberta

Personal Demons
Review by Jean Roberta

Ready to Serve
Review by Vincent Diamond

The Secret Tunnel
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Shuck
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Transgressions
Review by Vincent Diamond

Non-Fiction

Best Sex Writing '09
Review by Kristina Wright

The Big Penis Book
Review by Rob Hardy

Erotic Encounters
Review by Rob Hardy

The Forbidden Apple
Review by Rob Hardy

Hollywood’s Censor
Review by Rob Hardy

Lady in Red
Review by Rob Hardy

Licentious Gotham: Erotic...
Review by Rob Hardy

Live Nude Elf
Review by Rob Hardy

Live Nude Girl
Review by Rob Hardy

The Other Side of Desire
Review by Rob Hardy

Scripts 4 Play
Review by Ashley Lister