To submit requests for assistance, or provide feedback regarding accessibility, please contact

Arts & Entertainment

Promoting Yourself

R.L. Stine

Lesson time 05:53 min

Bob gives recommendations on how to promote yourself as a writer through school visits, book fairs, and social media.

R.L. Stine
Teaches Writing for Young Audiences
The Goosebumps author teaches you how to generate ideas, outline a plot, and hook young readers from the first page.


Well, most children's book authors cultivate a fan base by doing school visits. You might start out just locally. Or you might have your publisher find schools for you to visit and do classroom visits or assemblies of the whole school. And this is a wonderful way-- what a nice thing that kids are all together all the time. Adults aren't. Adults aren't in school. Kids are so much easier to reach, because they're all together. And then they can talk to each other, and they can tell each other about books. And that's a wonderful thing for a kids' author. So I would always say, start with the schools. You know, school visits are so much more effective than bookstore appearances, as far as familiarizing yourself to readers. The other thing to look for when you have-- when you actually have a book out and you're ready to sell it, and you're ready to show it to people, and you want people to know about it, is to look at all the book fairs that take place all around the country. There are many of them, many of them. And many of them look for authors. The Miami Book Fair, the Tucson book fair, which is really good and has 300 authors, the "LA Times" book festival has over 300 authors come. There are many local-- Tampa/St.Petersburg book festival, with a lot of Florida authors come. They're always over, and it's a great way to be there, appear there, sign books there, appear with other authors, go on panels. These book festivals, I think, are invaluable, and just a great way to introduce yourself and to be around other authors and to meet the crowds. Most children's books are bought by parents and librarians. So it's nice to be able to get in touch and find ways to let them know that your book is out there, because most kids don't buy their own books unless it's a school book fair or school book club or something like that. And even then, the parents are involved. So it's very important to try to reach parents and teachers and librarians as much as you can. I use social media a lot. And I think more and more authors find that they really need to do this to get out the word about their books. I'm on Twitter and Facebook and Instagram. But I enjoy all of that. I mean, that's really fun for me. But even for authors who don't enjoy it that much, it's very important, partly because in a lot of publishers, the marketing department and the publicity departments have been cut back. And a lot of publishers expect you to do your own marketing. They expect you to do your own publicity. And they expect you to have your Facebook page to sell your book, and your Twitter. And they want you to do it. And the nice thing is that having those things helps. It really does help you sell books. I'm on Twitter all the time. And I'm always thinking-- am I selling too much? Am I using it too much for marketing? So I do a lot of other stuff. I make sure that I don't just say, hey, this book is still available. Hey, only 12 shopping days till Christmas-- here, bu...

Take the fear out of writing

Award-winning novelist R.L. Stine wrote jokes and funny stories for 20 years before he switched gears and became a horror-writing legend. Since then, the author of the Goosebumps and Fear Street series has sold more than 400 million copies. In his first-ever online writing class, Bob takes the fear out of crafting fiction. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, you’ll learn new ways to conquer writer’s block, develop plots, and build nail-biting suspense that will thrill young readers.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

rl stine has taught me so much on how to make my story a little bit scary .

I loved his advice to slow things down to make something scary and to draw out the suspense. I was rushing and hadn't realized it and frustrated that the feeling I wanted wasn't coming through. Now i know better :)

I truly felt Mr. Stine was passionate and full of insight about his work. I enjoyed this masterclass, and I finished it feeling inspired. Thank you Mr. Stine.

So many fantastic insights, but the one that will probably help most is to just say "yes" to every kind of opportunity as it presents. This has been my favourite Masterclass to date:-)



Yes, say yes. Stine said that he has been lucky. It isn't luck. It is saying yes.

Shayne O.

Great advice. There doesn't seem to have been an emphasis on promoting yourself in other writers lessons.

Jacob R.

I hate social media. I would have to create a whole new account just for the novel promotion because I've more or less tainted my main account with politics. I don't understand the hype behind tweets that are utterly senseless, and I still haven't gotten the hang of hashtags.

Noah P.

When I was working as a book publicist, I always told all my authors "You HAVE to have a Facebook and Twitter account." Many, if not most, refused, saying it was a waste of time or they hated it or they didn't see the point. However, the authors who DID use it and followed my advice had book sales increase significantly within the span of a month.


In France, people don't care much about twitter. I don't have an account either (although I write tweets for big companies as a copywriter). I can't help notice that he has a very defined marketing approach. Now twitter looks more interesting to me, will look for his live Q/A!

Tina K.

Your tweet today is a quote from this class as well, paraphrasing . . . "Don't write from the heart!" After hearing you say this - I was set free! Free to explore my writer's voice, free to explore adventures with my characters, just plain free. Thanks, and bless your heart!

Clara S.

The word out there for new writers from every agent and publishing houses: Do your own publicity, and when you have a large following we'll call you (True story of Amanda Hocking adult novel writer.) I like being an indie author, but the work is the same--hard work to promote your books.

Lori M.

I'm on FB mostly since my target market for my photography and health coaching are women over 50. But... now I'm writing a book about a horse for kids. Hummmm. Where to go? Thinking Instagram, Youtube and maybe Twitter. I was confused by it too. Loving this course. :)

Miles T.

Build your website, set up your mailing list, and have fun on social media.

Krloz R.

I love engaging with other writers on social media. Especially on Instagram. I've found great book recommendation from some people I follow. @KrlozRuben