Dear Desperate Author,
Once again, you sent me an email solicitation to buy your recently self- or small press-published novel. Perhaps you used Media Eblast or a similar spam generator, or hired one of those fake marketing services that prey on desperate authors just like you. Perhaps you crafted the email all on your own. Because it’s the holidays and the world is spiraling ever farther into economic crisis, you may have suggested that books make good gifts, so I should buy yours.
What I want to know is, what made you think that the email address for a website called “Writer Beware” was appropriate to solicit? I mean, for one thing, there’s that word, “Beware.” Why would you imagine that the folks at a website that’s all about Bewares, especially writing-related Bewares, would be receptive to a buy-my-book spam? (Of course, scammers also solicit Writer Beware, so I guess it’s not that much of a deterrent.)
Another thing. If you aren’t just spamming blindly, and actually know something about me or Writer Beware, you may also be aware of my opinion of bulk email as a promotional strategy. You may even know that I have a particular loathing for Media Eblast. Which would make your buy-my-book spam even less appropriate and even more annoying than it would otherwise be. (And if this is news to you, I guess you are spamming blindly. Naughty, naughty.)
Also, do you really think that spamming–even targeted spamming–is an effective way to drum up sales for your book? I mean, really? I’ve got news for you–it’s not. No one buys a book because they got an email solicitation from someone they never heard of. Most people will respond as I did, and hit the delete button. (For your sake, I hope you didn’t pay someone a lot of money to irritate me in this way.)
One last suggestion. Proofread your spams. A thriller is not a “triller.” It’s “heart-rending,” not “heart-rendering.” Apostrophes should not randomly adorn plurals and possessives, but should decorate only contractions. Yes, I’m a stickler for this stuff, and I’m not alone. You don’t enhance your credibility with typos, grammatical errors, or malapropisms. (Again, I really hope you did not pay anyone to make these mistakes on your behalf.)
Desperate Author, I don’t mean to be unsympathetic. I understand your desperation–heck, all authors are fairly desperate these days, no matter who their publishers are. I know you may be spamming me not because you really think I’ll buy your book and give it to my Great-Aunt Edna for Christmas, but because it distracts you from your desperation by giving you the illusion of being pro-active. But trust me–you need to stop. Seriously. Because it’s not doing you any good, and no one loves a spammer. Not even at the holidays.