A question for authors and readers…

News, sorry its been too long

He’s pretty, isn’t he?

Okay, that wasn’t the question, sorry but feel free to comment.  :)

Here’s the question:

For readers:  What draws you to read a book?  Length?  Cover?  Blurb?  Author name?

For authors:  When you were a debut author, what got readers to your book?

The reason I’m asking these questions is because hardly anyone is reading my debut.  I know, I know, its been out a month and it takes awhile for people to find it.  I’ve already heard these from authors…you need a back list, don’t worry about your debut, concentrate on your next book, promo, promo, promo, did you have a mentor when you wrote the book (no I did not), have you joined a writer’s blog (tried but I’ve been rejected more times than I can count).

That’s all well and good and great advice but consider these facts that I have realized:

1.  No one pays that much attention to me on FB or Twitter, so any and all promo that I have done is ignored.

2.  I have/had ARC copies of my book and no one wanted them.

3.  I realize that my book is only 20 pages, it won’t win the Pulitzer but I’m proud of it.

4.  I know that most reviewers are backed up.  It happens, trust me.

5.  I know that the playing field is crowded out there with books, so I’m not sure how to stand out.

6.  I don’t have a posse.  Maybe I should get one…

You are probably thinking that I have sour grapes and in some respects I do.  It hurts when you do something that most people wouldn’t dream of doing, you are proud of it and it seems that no one cares.  It hurts that I have done everything right so far and nothing.  Nada…zip…crickets chirping.

Well, I know that there are people who have read it and liked it.  In fact I was told that I actually mislead them into thinking it was just hot and spicy and its more than that.  ;)

I have two blog tours that will start next month and I will post every day where I am for that day.  Hopefully, people will find me on the tours and want to read the book.  It’s all I can hope for now.

Have a great weekend y’all.

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Posted on January 25, 2013, in failing, Thoughts, writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. Usually I’m drawn to the cover first. I’ll read the first page and if it’s got that hook, I’m buying. :) Nice photo!

  2. He is pretty. I don’t have any books out, so all I can do is give you my best guesses. Has you publisher helped at all? Has anyone done a review for you? How is your Goodreads presence? I was told I need to increase mine before my books release.

    Sorry, this is probably not much help. Hopefully someone will have some better advice.

    • Regarding Goodreads…when I became an author, I had to combine my profile with my author profile. So far I like it but its still different.

      I’ve gotten two Goodreads reviews, one review on the ARe site and Under the Covers gave me 4.5 feathers and promoted the heck out of me on my release day. Other than that, nothing.

      I guess my biggest thing and frustration is social media. I get turned off by the constant barrage of it. I tune a lot of it out of my mind. I don’t need to be reminded a dozen times a day to buy/like/follow/whatever from an author.

  3. Agreed, very nice photo. I’m first attracted to a cover. I don’t have a preference just know I don’t like corny, slapped together ones (I know what I don’t like). I’d rather a black page with white type then that. Second, I’ll check out the blurb and first page. I usually like longer lengths. I read a ton of books and was even a more avid reader before I wrote so these are just my thoughts. As far as promotion, I believe your blog hops will help but it is also a matter of doing stuff and being consistent for a longer time. Having a plan. Granted, I’m planning now for my first novel release in December so… I’ll test this all out and let you know what works!

  4. A good cover and a good blurb always attract me to a book. Good word of mouth helps too – I don’t typically read short books – not because they aren’t well written but because I have trouble connecting with the characters – that said you know I’m going to be reading your book:)

  5. Harlie, those are great questions.

    As a reader, title and cover draw me first, I think. A bad cover usually discourages me from going any farther. After that, the blurb, and if I get that far, the excerpt. I have to read an excerpt, especially if it’s an author I’m not familiar with, so I know what the writing is like. There are few authors I purchase sight unseen, and those are ones I know pretty well, well enough to know I’m not taking a chance.

    As an author – hell if I know. But I do think promotions done on Yahoo groups help. Making guest appearances on other blogs. Having guests on your blog because it draws new people who can look at you. Scheduling chats at groups like LRC, and appearing in group chats with your fellow authors. Contests and giveaways.

    And just keep on plugging away, keep on writing, and with time you will fill up that backlist. Never get discouraged and keep on going, Harlie!

  6. I am discouraged to the point of why am I writing. I love writing but if no one is going to read what I write, then what’s the point? I promise that what I’m working on is longer but its pretty bad when reviewers have told me that they hate reading short stories and won’t read my book at all. Won’t even give it a chance. *sigh*

    I know that everyone is different in their approach to promo but seriously? As much promo that I’ve done over the last three years, you’d think that I get it paid forward.

    At least my hubs read it and is very proud of me. ;)

    As far as scheduling chats and such, I would love to do that but considering that there is no love at there…

  7. More the blurb or excerpt than the cover. If it’s a sex excerpt, forget it. I read all kinds of genres, but I don’t enjoy that kind of excerpt between two people I haven’t gotten to know by reading the book. I have favorite authors, but I often try books by authors I know in person or have met on the net. I’m nore inclined to read a novel or a novella than a short story. Jane

  8. writervictoriaadams

    I drive myself crazy doing the promo – not seeing the results I’d hope for. Keep hoping one day. And he isn’t pretty he’s HOT!!!!!!!!!

  9. Welcome to the pack of the unsung author. If I knew what pulled the reader to the book I’d be as rich as Rowlings, or Roberts or King.

  10. Okay I’ll admit. The cover does draw my eyes first. If it’s funky looking, I may not pick it up to read the blurb. So long as it’s not strange/off-putting, I will then flip to the blurb than price tag.

    And yes…he is SMOKING hot. *fans self*

  11. Oh girl…as if I know anything as an author…

    For me as a reader, I’d say cover (which is magnificent and a total draw for me) and topic(which I also love). I am backed up – you are right, it happens. In theory I am less drawn to shorter books but in reality I read them all the time.

    For what it is worth, I’d say give it a little time. I have noticed that it is often, especially with first time authors, at least 2 months post publish before I hear of/see them. I think your tours will help get you before the masses for sure.

    I think perhaps if you can also perhaps ‘visit’ on a few other authors blogs, sometimes that might help. I learn of lots of new books that way, from the authors I already love…and most of them are indie authors.

    As for the, ahem, eye candy above, oh yeah….got a fan? ;)

    • I have never turned down an invite to another author’s blog and I’ve been on a few since it released with giveaways and it was very lukewarm…at best.

      The general thinking is that since its short, its a no go with most readers. They want longer books. *sigh*

      Plus, having a mentor helps. An established author to help you, assist with the ups and downs of getting published, the emotional let down of release day (which I had), and generally being a cheerleader for a debut author. I didn’t have this at all. I had the opposite actually.

      If it hadn’t been for a few encouraging words from a couple of authors in the beginning, I wouldn’t have published it at all. Of course, those authors are no where to be found now. Vanished…

      That said, a few authors are still kicking my butt and telling me to buck up and realize that it takes time and those words help tremendously.

      I guess I’m just impatient. Again, it goes back to paying it forward and I got nothing.

  12. Daryl, you crack me up! Its just a vicious cycle that we are on. :/

  13. Oh and the picture….

    Yall are welcome!!!

  14. As a reader, I do like a nice cover. I will look for someone I’m familiar with, so name recognition does count.

    If I spot a cover or book title I like, then I’ll take a closer look. Then I’ll read the blurb, if that intrigues me I’ll read the first few pages.

    If I’m hooked, I’ll buy the book.

  15. The cover—must be a hot guy. Hate chicks by themselves.
    Then the story—don’t like novellas but not too long either. If over 3oopgs would prefer a print book. Blog advice leads me to the publisher or Amazon for reviews.
    Will buy on recommendations from bloggers and free book offers draw me in.
    I will read the free book, get hooked, and buy the rest of the series or other books by the same author.
    I am looking for M/M, BDSM, mystery, suspense too.

  16. Don’t get discouraged. I’ve had comments that readers wished my short stories were longer too. And reviews…I’ve only had one for my Dec release. There are so many books out now that it’s easy to get lost in the crowd. I don’t have any real answers, but know that you’re not alone. Take a deep breath & know you’re in for the long haul. You can do it!

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