Presentation is a huge thing for an author, and for their books. You always hear the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” But in reality, that’s exactly what everyone does. If the cover is striking, or draws attention, people are more likely to read the synopsis and potentially buy the book. It’s the first thing that a buyer, a reader, sees in the bookstore and so we use it to gain attention. It’s the author’s version of the red carpet in a way, there are beautiful works, and sometimes there are the ones that leave people wondering what they were thinking.
It’s why cover artists pay so much for copyright free photos – in order to work their magic, and why cover artists, whether they draw their own art or use the copyright free photos are paid so much to create the covers. We, as authors, are hoping to have a striking visual that draws people in, that makes people spend those few extra seconds to pick up the book – or pause on it in the ebook store, read a little about it, and hopefully if we’ve done a great job, add it to their cart.
But it’s not just the cover that has to draw people in. The books don’t always sell themselves, and any good author and publisher know that you need to market. It’s our job to spread the word, by tweet, blog, radio or tv ad, booths at trade shows or craft shows that fit the genre, giveaways, etc. If you can use it to get more attention, all the better, and all the best for getting the word out there that this wonderful piece of fiction, or non-fiction, that you, the author, dedicated so much of your time to is out there for people to buy. This great shining thing that you want to shout about is now available, all your hard work paid off because it’s written, it’s edited, and it’s being published (or is published).
But you, the author, need to be just as polished in some ways, as the book(s) that you’re trying to put out there to the people of the world. If you really want people to think that your book is worth reading, then you while you market it and get the word out need to be aware of how you present yourself as well. If you are constantly not using punctuation correctly, or not grammatically correct in your sentence structure, or using ‘ur’, no (for know), r, etc. it DOES, at least in my opinion, hurt your chances of getting people to buy your book. If you in marketing your book and trying to announce to the world that this great thing you did is, or will be, for sale, can’t properly write that announcement, than how can I trust that the book itself will really be great? You’re presenting poor grammar, and poor use of slang as the author in your announcement.
For me, not only is it hard to read and wade through to understand exactly what you’re trying to say, it leaves me with no confidence that this book will be worth my time. I don’t need a book riddled with errors, and that really is what your presentation of the announcement leaves me feeling I will get.
Just like people who go to a 9-5 job, and have a dress code, we as authors need to have a dress code of sorts, but on a more literary level. You need to present your best face when making announcements about a new book, give people the confidence that your book is worth the read because what you say flows, is legible, and makes them want to pick it up, not switch to the next available offer.