I’ve seen a number of posts on the ‘net lately about how writers can cut costs. There was even a discussion on Sisters in Crime about authors who were giving up their web sites. Others said they were cutting out conferences. One discussion I read on another writer’s blog said she had cut down on her writing organization memberships.
I definitely need to cut costs. I even took on a seasonal job doing taxes to try to boost income. But as someone who has been around small businesses all my life, I have to say that I believe cutting anything that advertises you as an author or helps you network to find those advertising or signing opportunities is a bad move. People can’t read your stuff if they don’t know you’re out there. Many e-authors even contract to maintain a website when they sell the book.
You can move your website to one of those free services (or your blog–obviously we think that works). See Georgie B’s blog for thoughts on blog advertising. If you keep your domain name (that costs a big 12.00 from most places) your readers won’t know the difference except for the ads added to the site. Learn how to do HTML so you can update it yourself.
Conferences can be pricey–so choose ones closer to home–offer to help out on some of the organizing or teach a class to get a discount. Many mystery conferences that I know of will do that. When Bouchercon came to Denver, many moons ago, I did that.
As to quitting your writing organizations, do it if they aren’t working for you anymore. But review carefully, you may find that you got more helpful tips from them than you think.
That’s my two-cents–discounted for the current economy. Tell me how and where you are cutting costs.