One of the first hurdles you'll approach as you try to market yourself is coming up with a good tagline.
It's got to be catchy, memorable. It can't be too lyrical or ethereal. It's got to say everything about you in five words or less. It's got to ooze character, stamina and oomph.
Is it even possible?
1) Determine exactly what you are taglining. I am using this blog as romance writer Ninette Swann. But all of the good, general romance or erotic taglines are being used. Trust me. I checked google. So, I couldn't go that route without ending up with something like my Twitter profile which is "Romantic suspense writer is full of romantic suspense." At least it's honest about the fact that it doesn't know what it's doing, but still, no good for a writer's actual page.
2) Ask your friends. I used Facebook. I got such gems as:
"It's my dick in a book."
"The Quivering Member"
"All the awkwardness you can handle, and more!"
I love my friends. Still, as genius as these are (and I loved every one of them), it behooves someone branding themselves to go a little more serious, unless it's totally obvious they are comedic and that's where their following comes from. I've a feeling more than a few true romance readers would be turned off by "my dick in a book." (Though, really, it would be their loss.)
I got one amazing suggestion:
"Where love and fiction meet."
It's perfect. It's not too vague, not too precise. It covers exactly what I'm attempting to do in simple and pretty language. But it's just not...me enough. (Okay, who am I kidding, I was just too impatient to wait for all the suggestions to roll in before doing this thing.)
Anyway, point being, ask your friends. You'll get a lot of laughs and maybe even some valuable imput.
3) Pick one aspect of yourself that you are looking to showcase. The whole kit-and-caboodle is too much. No one will be able to squish it down into a caption-sized slogan. So what's one thing you enjoy, one aspect you want to share, one image you want to get across?
Don't try to think of the words. Use a general theme. Then use Google.
For instance, Patch of Sky:
First I tried Nabokov quotes...because I like Nabokov. But that's too tenuous a link, even if it is pretentious enough for my stuffy tastes.
That's when the obvious hit me. Proust, duh. (Has that fragment ever been typed before? I think not.)
Now, I don't know Proust by heart, so Goodreads to the rescue.
Patch of Sky comes from this quote from Swann's Way in Remembrance of Things Past "Always try to keep a patch of sky above your life."
It's a good tagline because it does and is these things (which you should also have your tagline do and be):
- It's a quirky reference that a few people will really, really, appreciate.
- It explains how I feel when I write and about my life in general all the time, so it's me.
- I will not easily outgrow it (see my other blog, Tales of an Unlikely Mother...well, after three years of being that mother, I am not unlikely any more. It should now read, Tales of a Completely Ordinary Mother.)
- It comes with an easily imaged background.
- It has name recognition on Google already (this was accidental, but I assume fortuitous) as there is a band out there called This Patch of Sky, and maybe lovers of their music will also love romance novels? One never knows, but more traffic is good traffic, in my opinion.
Good luck tagging yourself!