I’ve made contact with a lot of writers thanks to the vast and magical interweb. The exact mechanics of these connections has to do with the acquisition of a plethora of free books from a fantastic site called Instafreebie, which allows for the downloading of said books for only the cost of my email address.
Some may feel this is too high a price to pay because only the most naive and feeble-minded would fail to realize that each time I downloaded a book from a new author, I was joining his or her mailing list. Which, in turn, means I could expect an influx of emails from all of these wonderful authors.
Now, I can already hear some of you crying “foul!” (Yes, I can hear you, so be in awe of my Santa-like abilities). “You also have a mailing list!” you say.
I do not deny this. Nor do I begrudge any of the other writer’s theirs. There are a few select writers whose lists I have joined without the added sweetness of a free book, so don’t think I’m badmouthing anyone for having a mailing list. I’m fer it, not aginn it, as my hillbilly forbearers might have said if I had any.
The point at which I am painfully attempting to arrive is this: there are many kinds of list-owners.
Some of these authors have sent me maybe one email, to thank me for my interest in their work and to let me know that they would keep me informed of any upcoming blockbuster news. A few, it seems to me, may have never emailed me at all, although I’d have to cross-correlate the contents of my Kindle with the contents of the “Reading” folder in my email to confirm this.
On the other end of the spectrum are the writers for whom sending out emails appears to have replaced writing books as their primary literary activity. Some of these guys and gals are sending me multiple messages daily, on topics that range from additional free books that are available, to the path they took in becoming a writer, to a nice piece about pets.
Of course, there is a full spectrum along which all the other writers fall, from infrequent to… yes I’ll say it, annoying.
What does this mean to you? You who might be reading this right now? Well, those of you who are on my mailing list will quickly realize that you’re not reading these words from your inbox. You’ve had to make the trip here. You’ve had to actively participate. This makes you pretty special. But what about my part in all of this? I do, after all, have a list of my own.
My intention is to be on the far less prolific end of the email continuum. When there is “breaking news,” I’ll definitely hit the subscribers up and let them know. When I have something else significant to share, like news of a good friend’s upcoming release or something along those lines, I’ll likely send out an email then as well.
But other than that, you shouldn’t expect (or fear) that you’ll be getting constant messages. I’m a writer and I like telling stories about myself and my pets as much as the next guy (or gal) but when I send you an email I want you to see it and say, “Hey, I haven’t heard from this boob in a while. I wonder what he has to say.” And then I’d hope you might open and actually read it. Rather than, as I’ve begun to do, open it long enough for the email client to mark it as read, then drop it into the folder, so that I can go back to it later if I feel so led. (Or drop it into the circular file, never to be thought about again).
On the average, unless something earth-shaking is happening, I would expect you’ll hear from me once (twice, maybe) a month or so, to highlight any news, make a whining request that you buy/read/review my books, and to supply links to blog posts that I feel might interest you, (even if they are not my posts. -gasp-)
But hey, this is me, and that’s them. I’m not saying either of us is right. I’m just saying that I’m less wrong.