Here are some great examples of how not to promote your self-published book. These are actual emails that I received from complete strangers. I have removed the book titles and the names of the authors to save them embarrassment.
My third novel, XYZ. is now available for review. If you would like a review copy, I will gladly send you one.
Why would I care if his book was available for review? Why would anyone when this guy can't even be bothered to tell us what the hell his book is about? I'm sure when his book bombs, he'll be totally baffled by its failure. The same goes for this guy:
My novel 'XYZ' is now available on Amazon's Kindle (PC, Mac, Blackberry, Android, Iphone, Ipad) It is also available directly from me as a pdf file @ XYZ. The paperback edition will be available next week on Amazon. Let me know what you think!
Why would I do that? I don't know him and I don't know anything about his book. Does he think that I have nothing better to do than download unidentified crap from total strangers? If this is his idea of brilliant promotion, just imagine what his idea of compelling drama is. A week or so later, he sent me another email:
I wrote XYZ as pure entertainment.Sure, it's a vampire story. But it's set in Las Vegas, and it's told in short, cliffhanger chapters full of dialog and action. Just read the first 4 chapters (like I said, they're short), and if you're NOT hooked, then let me know and I'll leave you alone.
He still thinks I care. You'd think my total lack of response would be a subtle hint that I don't and never will. But a least this time he's said a little something about his book. Nothing that would make any sentient being want to read it, but still, he made a slight effort. Unlike, say, this woman:
My book XYZ is out. You can buy it here (XYZ). Please promote it on your blogs and sites.
Of course I will. But why stop there? Could I also pass out fliers on your behalf? Or maybe make some cold calls? Let me know. I am at your service.