I realize that I'm in a lot of people's address books because of AW, and because I'm often the first contact point for people registering.

That doesn't excuse a writer engaging in this crap.

I got spam this AM from a member who doesn't actually participate in AW. This is someone who I assisted with changing their Username.

Hi friend,

If we’ve made any kind of contact in the last few years, you probably know I was writing a book. Perhaps it seemed silly or outright insane. In many ways, it was. But somehow, that book now exists outside of my hard drive. XXX is now available to buy from major booksellers, and it has already appeared in media outlets like Buzzfeed and Publisher’s Weekly.

Here are some ways to help, if you can:

Buy the book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indiebound, Books-a-Million, Downpour, or Hudson Booksellers.

Write a review on Amazon or Goodreads to boost the book’s visibility. Search algorithms prioritize items with more reviews, so the more reviews Spring gets, the more people will see the book. The review can be short and simple – anything helps.

Tell your friends about XXX on social media. Even something as simple as posting a photo of the cover is a huge help. You can tag me XXX on Instagram and Twitter, and I will share it if you’re comfortable.

Thank you to everybody who has already shown so much support. 2020 has been quite a year, and you are making it that much brighter.
I understand the desire, and the need, to pimp your book. This isn't the way to do that.

* Don't Ever Send Unsolicited Email.
You're one of 69K members whom I helped three years ago after you created a second account and then wanted your Username changed. We've never otherwise interacted. You have no reason to think I'd be interested in your book. You've basically added to my labor, and thoroughly annoyed me.

* Don't use meaningless salutations like "friend."
I'm not your friend. Learn to use mail merge. It's not rocket science.

* Create an opt-in list
Don't blanket email every person in your address book. It just pisses off strangers, it may annoy your ISP, and can cause your hosting or service to be cancelled Most ISPs would consider sending the kind of email you sent me as unsolicted spam. It's illegal, and violates FTC regulations. Among other requirements, the CAN-SPAM act requires that solicitations and ads be clearly identified as an ad, that there is an unsubscribe option to remove a recipient from the list and an opt-in requirement that specifies recipients must request to be added, and there must be a post address where you can be reached. Here's a list of requirements.

* Don't use a generic personal email account. Use your own domain.
You could lose access to a generic email account; it's not a reliable address. Use your own domain name, and a dedicated email address just for your list/newsletter.

* Use special software.
Don't just use your free email account and a client. Use Mailchimp or Substack or Constant Contact or any number of other options, some of which are free. This kind of software makes it easy to follow FTC requirements, makes it easy for readers to subscribe or unsubscribe, and makes sure your address is included.

If I discover that you've spammed members, you're gone.