Reaching My Readers

I spent the weekend doing some research and study as I delve into some business planning. I need to get smarter about the way I do things, and I’ve realized that I’m doing for my own books what I complained about publishers doing for my books — just putting them out there and hoping people find them. The trick is to figure out how to get the word out.

One thing everyone suggests is having a mailing list and a newsletter of some sort. I have resisted because that’s something I’m really not into as a reader. I feel like there’s newsletter overload. You can’t visit a web site without getting a “sign up for my newsletter” pop up. On the other hand, that is a list that I would control. Facebook throttles the reach of things on my page, so even people who’ve signed up to get them aren’t seeing them unless I buy ads. There’s a lot of clutter and noise on Twitter. People don’t seem to be reading blogs anymore (though I guess if you’re seeing this, you’re the exception). People may drop out of platforms like Facebook or Twitter for reasons having nothing to do with me — protest against the companies’ policies, taking a break from social media in general. Having a list of people who’ve said they want to receive information from me makes it more likely that these people will get that information.

So, what do you think about author newsletters? Do you sign up for them? Would you sign up for one from me? Do you just want to be notified about releases or do you want other info on things that might relate to the author’s life and work (things like recipes, knitting patterns, book/movie reviews, etc.)?

Meanwhile, I’m trying to figure out where to go next after I get the next Rebels book done (don’t worry, that’s at the top of my list). I’m still playing with that idea of a series of holiday-themed fantasy romances, but I also have some other ideas in the works. One is a fantasy series that’s more of a “world” series, in which there’s one world that all these stories take place in, while each story is self-contained (with some overlap). You could read them in any order and still follow the story, but those who’ve read them all might get a little more out of them. Think Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series. The other idea I’ve been playing with is a cozy paranormal mystery series. I’ve noticed that most of the “also boughts” for my books on Amazon are this kind of book, and it’s something I enjoy reading. I have the beginnings of an idea for the characters and setting.

So, what are you most likely to read? Did you come to my books from the paranormal mystery side of things, the fantasy side of things, or the romance side of things?

That’s what makes a lot of this planning difficult. I don’t fall neatly into one area I can really focus on, and my fans seem to be all over the place.

6 Responses to “Reaching My Readers”

  1. Kristi

    I have never commented on any of the blogs I read before, but felt the need to today. I would definitely sign up for a newsletter. I read and re-read all of your books several times (I’m one of those weird people that has to re-read the whole series when a new installment is released). I initially came to your books from a love of a combination of fantasy and paranormal mystery. I must add that you have a wit, a sense of humor, and a way with storytelling that many of the formulaic paranormal authors today don’t quite have. I think that is what keeps me coming back to your books time and again. They have gotten me through some very difficult and stressful times in the last couple of years and I just want to say “Thank you.”

  2. Laura

    I would definitely sign up for your author newsletter! I just love your books – right now I am rereading them on my ereader during my daily commute. I am anxiously awaiting more.
    I prefer and love the fantasy side of things, and I am looking forward to your holiday and ´’world’ series.
    But I’d also like to read cozy fantasy/paranormal mysteries, because I love awesome characters to go along with my mystery.

  3. Angie

    I would sign up for a newsletter from you. Generally I would prefer to receive a newsletter no more than once a month with brief updates on any upcoming book releases and appearances, as well as having some additional personal content. The additional personal content could just be links to a few of the best blog posts from the month so I have the choice if I want to read them.

    I love the idea of holiday-themed romances, but I would also read a cozy paranormal mystery series.

  4. Michelle

    I like author newsletters. I also like author blogs, which seem to be getting harder to find. All of the ideas you have for potential books sound good to me. I came more from the fantasy side, but I also like cozy mysteries. I don’t generally read straight romances, they need to have something different, or be from an author I like.

  5. Donald

    A newsletter would be great – but no more than once a month. Put the important stuff up top and keep brief – what are you working on, expected next release, last release, etc. I personally would like to see some of the other blog like content you post in letter as well, but sometimes I might only have 2-3 minutes to glance through email and I read the first bit. If “the lead is buried” type email, I generally forget it and never come back. If the first few lines/bullets have something important to me – like release info – I’m going to remember to come back and read whole message later in the day.

  6. Raisa

    I’m not really a fan of newsletters but I think is a good idea. You can make an option for people to choose how many emails they will receive in a period of time. I think this will help those who don’t love newsletters but wants to receive information without getting your message box full. I don’t know if you check it regularly but I found your site following you Goodreads and I see always a few people answering your questions there, maybe you could use the site to promote yourself too.

    I said in a previous comment that I think you would be great writing cozy mysteries, and your idea of writing cozy paranormal was exactly what I had in mind when I thought about that, so definitely, I think you should go for this route 🙂

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