I’ve got lots of friends with books coming out soon. Some of them are well established writers who already have a following but some of them are debut writers, who might struggle to get their books noticed amid all the noise and excitement that surrounds big name books. So what can we readers do to help?
- Pre-order the book. Pre-orders help nudge a book up the charts in the early days of sales, that helps the book bob to the top and be a little bit more visible.
- Order from your local book shop – I’ve just popped in to my Waterstone’s in Chichester to pre-order Kate Mallinder’s Summer of No Regrets and Thomas Taylor’s Malamander. This ensures the books pass through a book seller’s hands and hopefully, once seen, they’ll order more in.
- Be excited about the books to other people, share on social media, tell people about it. I’m super excited to see Marie Basting’s first book, Princess BMX – what a great premise for a story! And when Candy Gourlay’s new book, Bone Talk, was shortlisted for the Costa, I made this video and shared it without shame!
- Leave good reviews. You don’t have to buy a book from Amazon to leave a review there and they really make a difference – if a book gets over 50 reviews, Amazon will start to promote it. And a lot of readers use Goodreads – I used to love it until I was published but now it is a very scary place – someone I know gave me 1 star (the worst you can get) for More of Me when it first came out – I think it was a mistake but I couldn’t tell them because I didn’t want to upset them. That 1 star dragged down the average for ages. And before any copies of Beauty Sleep were available, some one gave it 3 stars out of 5 – they couldn’t possibly have read it but again, that score will effect the average rating. So be kind, if you love a book, go give it 4 or 5 stars and help counter any of those kind of blips!
- Send a message to the writer or illustrator about how much you liked the book and why – they really will be touched. It can be a lonely old business and one fraught with self doubt.
- Share their posts on social media to boost their own efforts to shout about there books – it all helps. Apparently you need to see something seven times before it even makes an impression. Be part of their seven.
- Go and see them if they put on an event near you. Take pictures, tweet about it. Let your local paper know what a great time you had – kind readers have done this for me and it’s very wonderful.
- Vote for them. Competitions crop up for all sorts of things, if you see one and get the chance to vote, do.
- Join in if they’re running a competition – or get your children to join in. Huge thanks to Cathy Cassidy who is running a competition for me on her Dreamcatcher’s blog.
- Follow them on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, WordPress – where ever – let them feel the love!
Now following my own advice, here are a couple more books I can not wait to get my paws on. Click the books for a sales link.