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How to Fan an Ebook Author



This is a post on how to treat your favorite ebook authors like rockstars. *blinks* What’s that? Did you ask if this post is a little self-serving since I just had an ebook come out? *scoffs* *sputters* *shuffles feet* You know what? Go to your room!

*coughs* *clears throat*

Okay. Now, where were we?

I specified ebook authors because many ebook authors you won’t see on tours nor will they have huge promotional campaigns backing them. There also isn’t months of build-up like there may be with a print book. Also, I’m an ebook author (and I’m also a huge ebook reader–over two hundred books already this year) so I’m speaking to my experience. Most of these will carry over to all mediums of books, but this is what I’ve found is helpful for ebook authors specifically.

Here are just a few ways to rockstar your favorite authors:

1. Buy their book on release day. (Obvious, right?) And then go the extra step and brag about buying their book. On Facebook. On Twitter. On your blog. Wherever. Amazon even gives you the easy links right after you purchase it. All you have to do is tweet or whatever right then and there and boom! You’re golden. (I do this a lot.) If you didn’t know you liked this book and author so much until after you’d read their ebook, purchase their book if you got it on loan from the library or through Prime or whatever, or consider gifting it…or just plan to buy their next book on release day. It’s gauche, but money talks. And while you usually can’t buy love…you can buy mine. It’s true. *shrugs* I’m cheap too.

2. Retweet, “like”, fave, repost, share what they post about their book. Social media makes spreading the word so easy, but a lot of authors are introverts…so promo is like stripping naked and walking across the room. By the end of a blog tour, I feel like I’ve sold my soul and I worry that I’ve alienated everyone by my promo tweets and posts…even though I know I’m not that bad. It FEELS that way because I’m so out of my element.

When you have beautiful dreams of being a writer as a kid…they in no way will ever include standing on an online street corner and shouting about your book. We’re like those people hired by pizza chains and mattress stores with the big arrow signs–you know the ones–the ones who you pity and think, “There’s not enough money in the world to make up for wearing that Statue of Liberty costume.” (Take it from me, wearing a costume bites.) Take pity on an author and get them off that street corner for a moment. Do what you can to keep us off the streets…

3. So, you’ve read it and love it…tell the author…and then stalk them…in a good way. Authors are more accessible than ever now. I keep seeing in reviews of Past My Defenses questions about it being a series and who the next book is about. For every dozen of those…one person will find me on Twitter and ask. As most of you know, I’m the least approachable person ever. *posts picture of dog on Facebook* *tells story in blog about allergies and OCD gone wrong* *hunts you down on Twitter to stare at your food tweets* Writers are often easy to find and flatter…and it takes a dozen good reviews to make up for the one and two star reviews. Comment on their posts. Like their author pages. Hang with them on Twitter.

This might surprise you, but writing can be a very lonely profession. We bury ourselves in worlds we create and then when they’re published we have to distance ourselves from those creations so that we don’t take everything said about them personally. It’s a little like putting your child in a talent show and then sitting in an audience next to hecklers. You can either throat punch them, or say, “It’s okay…it’s okay…it’s fine,” and go eat a gallon tub of cookie dough. (I live on the edge and risk Salmonella all the time. It’s very rockstar to taunt death like that, I think.)  *goes to eat cookie dough before finishing this post*

4. REVIEW IT! Review it on one review site like Goodreads and one retail site like Amazon or B&N. It doesn’t have to be a glorious novel of a review. Say what you liked. Quote your favorite line. And that’s a wrap. Easy peasy, kids. I’m going a step further here, though. Of course you should always review with your conscience, but FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD IN THE WORLD, do these two things:

First, be aware of the hovertext on the stars on a site. Hover over three stars on Goodreads and then hover over the same on Amazon. They’re different. Also, ask yourself this as as you’re checking out the stars…ask yourself: will I buy a book that is rated at three stars on this site? What amount of stars do I consider a recommendation that a book is good? If you want to fave a book and recommend it to others, don’t rate it fewer stars than you’d consider a recommendation on those sites. Use your personal arbitrary review system for your blog, but rate on other sites according to the hovertext and your buying habits.

Second, honey, sweetie, sugar, baby…round up that review of this book you hearted. If you give half stars or decimal stars, you obviously put a lot of thought into it, and, I’ll admit that the bulk of the books I read should have half stars. But the world of book rating is not fair, and we must choose whole stars at this point. *shakes fist at sky* While it’s true in the world of grading that a 79 is still a C, it sure bites when your book gets 3.9 stars in the text of a glowing review, only to end up with a 3 star review. You think, “Sooooo close…sooooo close. What could I have done?” and you go weep in a corner. Actually, that’s how I was in school too. But with B’s. I was a little…uptight about grades. And I’ve seen a lot of 3.9 star reviews lately on “LOVE IT” reviews I’ve read. Let’s have Kevin Sorbo say it best:

I know. I don’t normally use Gifs, but…that’s how authors feel when you round down to three stars. We walk out of our house and go stand on our street, and we yell just like that. *shrugs* We live glamorous lives…full of DISAPPOINTMENT! And I mentioned up above how you’re supposed to keep us off the streets. *gives you a significant look*

5. Now, it’s time to group hug. Check out what other fans have said and “like” their reviews. Comment on their reviews. Go to lists and add the book and then “like” when other people have added it. This is the equivalent of going around and fist-bumping other people for being cool enough to recognize a book is good. Do that. It’ll bump their reviews up to being more visible. And it’ll further solidify yourself in the fandom. Then, if you’re more of an extrovert, join the author’s street team if they have one, or offer to feature their next book or current book on your blog or do a cover reveal. Pull out your lighter, hold it up high, and request “Hey Jude” one more time while hugging the stranger beside you.

Be that rockstar fan that I know you can be! Stop two seconds shy of throwing your underwear or grabbing their legs. Because restraining orders or acting out Misery are not cool…but otherwise…keep your favorite author off the streets.

Okay, that’s what I’ve got, kids. I’m sure there are plenty of other ways to help ebook authors and if you tell me, I’ll add them.

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