No matter what kind of book you've written, its success depends on two things: It must serve a need, and you must find its audience. Most books fail simply because people never hear about them. And this is the paradox for budding authors: People aren't paying attention to traditional marketing and advertising anymore. But free advertising is alive and well.Whatever you want to call it --- buzz, word of mouth, peer-to-peer or viral marketing -- you can't just manufacture it. You must earn it -- by engaging your target audience. Fortunately, there is a very straightforward, ethical way of gaining this free exposure: by participating on social networks. These social media sites, such as Amazon, MySpace, Facebook, and other Web 2.0 networks, allow members to share information about themselves and their books. Word of mouth is the only thing that can make a book really successful. Until recently, this required “pull”—connections with powerful allies in the publishing food chain. Today, creative writers can connect with readers directly. The only requirements are a link to the Internet and the will to plug in.