Do Book Writers Need Newsletters?

Should a Book Writer Use Email Newsletters?

Should a Book Writer Use Email Newsletters?
Photo by OpenIcons

Should a Book Writer Use Email Newsletters?

Are you thinking about starting a newsletter?

Newsletters are a great way to stay in touch with your readers. They let readers know about upcoming books, book signings, and other events. They're also a great way for readers to see the personal side of things, the wizard behind the curtain. But there's one downside to newsletters.

I wrote an article about blogging for writers. The big question was, is blogging keeping you away from your writing work or are you balancing the two?

The same goes for newsletters. If you start a newsletter, will it take over your writing time? The writing time that is devoted to your books and other writing projects that grow your freelance writing business?

If you decide to start a newsletter, here are a few questions to ask yourself so you can stay on task.

  • How often are you going to send out the newsletter?
  • How much time each week will you devote to the newsletter?
  • Will the newsletter cut into your writing time? If yes, is it worth it?
  • What are you hoping to achieve with the newsletter?
  • What is its purpose?

Let's say you send the newsletter out once a month and you allow four hours to write it, edit it, and set it up in the email management system (i.e., MailChimp, Constant Contact, Aweber).

If you have 40 hours a week to work on your writing, an hour a week spent on the newsletter won't be a big deal. But if you have 15 hours a week for writing, then that hour will seem like a huge chunk of your time. If it is a huge chunk of your time, you need to ask yourself if it is worth it and if it is necessary.

Any time you come up against something that is begging for your attention, ask yourself: Is it worth my time and is it necessary?

Anything can sound like a bright idea in the beginning. But once you implement it into your schedule, it can feel like a chore. It can feel like just one more task in your already-packed schedule.

If a newsletter is truly necessary to your business, then do it. If you look forward to reaching out to readers in a more personal way and you don't see it as a chore, by all means, do it. If you have time to devote to it, go for it.

But if you are limited on time, think long and hard before making a decision. Maybe you could send it out once every other month or just four times a year.

The point here is to avoid cramming too much into your already-busy schedule. It's easy to let the business side of things take over and neglect your writing work. So, make sure creating a newsletter is right for you.

Are you thinking of starting a newsletter or do you already have one? I'd love to hear your feedback. Stop by my Facebook wall and let me know! – https://facebook.com/jodycalkinsbiz

Jody Calkins
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