Many authors are familiar with writers’ groups where people meet regularly to discuss what they’ve been writing and set themselves friendly challenges to keep the creative juices flowing. These can be invaluable for some writers, but are limited by location. If, like me, you’re an expat, for example, then it’s unlikely you’ll be able to muster up a local group. Time can be an issue too if you work long hour or shifts which mean you’re not free when other people are.
And so internet-based author groups are emerging. They’ve also evolved to not only be about writing and generating ideas, but also about jointly publicising and promoting books once written and published, whether by themselves or a publishing company, and regardless of format.
This new facet is what makes author groups well worth considering. All indie authors know exactly how hard it can be to market their book. Joining forces with other writers to come up with buddy promotion schemes and combining efforts to produce a blog to win exposure for all the authors’ books are just two very positive examples of how these can be beneficial.
An author group can be linked by friendship, genre, age and outlook – or anything really!
The Bookseller magazine recently (29th May) looked a few of these groups.
www.killerwomen.org was founded by Melanie McGrath and Louise Millar initially as a place crime-writing women could socialise. However, it’s gone on to develop as a collective way to reach authors. Its members consider that it strengthens their brand.
www.the-history-girls.blogspot.co.uk was started by Mary Hoffman in response to a surge of interest in historical fiction. The members take it in turns to write for the blog, thus reducing the time-consuming requirement for each individual author to maintain their own blogs.
Then there is theprimewriters.com for more mature writers who generally face a bit of a tough time from a book industry that is somewhat obsessed by youth and celebs. The group provides mutual support and promotion for its members, who all published their first book over the age of 40.
Forming or joining an author group could be a very worthwhile option, so take a look at the ones mentioned here and consider how you might be able to link up with other writers. Use Facebook and Twitter or other social media to send out feelers for potential group members as a starting point. And once you’ve formed a group, let me know about it so I can promote it here on my blog!