The Heretic II: The Reckoning

by J.D. Rhoades 

Wow. 118 replies to my last post asking what is it that influences people to buy. Several people have asked me if that's some kind of record. I'm not sure, but it may very well be. 

Thank you all for your responses, which were very illuminating. I won't bore you with a tabulation of all the votes, partially because a lot of your answers defied easy pigeonholing and partially because counting every vote was looking like it was going to take longer than the Minnesota recount litigation. But I did get enough data to see significant trends. Here are the trends I saw, with my answers, and some thoughts, and…whee! More questions!

1. Have you ever bought a book by an author who you'd never heard of because you saw the trailer for it on the Internet?

Your answers:  the overwhelming response was "no." But Our Toni pointed out another use for trailers: to give the sales reps a quick and easy way to grasp what the book was about and, possibly, a tool with which to sell it.

My answer: I've never bought a book because of the trailer. All due respect to my friends who've done these, but most trailers bore the pants off me.  I did have an interesting experience with Toni's trailer for BOBBIE FAYE'S' VERY (VERY VERY VERY) BAD DAY. It was done like a movie preview, with scenes from the book brought to life. This trailer, I'm happy to say did not bore me, but I discovered that, when I read the book, the actress Toni had playing  Bobbie Faye clashed with the picture I got  in my mind from the book. I quickly got over it, but was jarring at first. 

2. Have you ever bought a book by an author who you'd never heard of based on their website, blog, or MyFace page? Or did you more often find the author's 'net presence AFTER you read them?

Your answers:   The majority  said they went to an author's website AFTER reading the author's book, to learn more about the author. But, there was a significant enough number of people who noted that they'd "met" authors on blogs and such and picked up their books as a result. It's too significant a minority, IMHO, to be safely ignored. This made me  realize that I had phrased the question too narrowly by only including websites and author blogs, so there's an additional question at the end of this installment. Some people pointed out that they looked to the website to learn about upcoming books as well. 

My answer:  I have had people tell me they've picked up one of my books because they read my blog or encountered me on an Internet  message board or on Facebook. No one's ever told me they've bought a book because of my website. I've bought several books by people who I've "met" online, but that's because of actual  online interactions with them, not by passively reading the website. 

3. Have you ever bought a book by an author who you'd never heard of because they were appearing in a bookstore and they caught your interest?

Again, the vast majority said "no." BUT…see below for a reason writers may not want to just stay home. 

My answer: No. Never. 

4. Have you ever bought a book by an author who you'd never heard of because you saw it in the store and it looked interesting? Where was it in the store?

A vast majority said "yes", and a lot of you credited prominent display of the book, either on the tables at the front or face out in the stacks.

5. If you've ever  bought a book from an author who you'd never heard of for any other reason, why was that?

Here, the answers were all over the map, but there was a definite preference for personal recommendations, either by friends or by bookstore staff. Other things that influenced people were the cover, the jacket copy, and just picking the book up and reading a bit.

So, what have we learned? Well, some of the things that influence buyers we don't have any control over, but some we do. So let's talk about the things we do, and feel free to disagree with my conclusions below:

Trailers may have their uses, but they don't seem to have a lot of influence on consumer decisions. They may be handy for influencing buyers for bookstores (and any bookstore owners or managers out there, feel free to chime in).

Personal appearances of the "read and sign" variety don't seem to influence new readers to buy  books. However, since staff recommendations do seem to have an effect, a writer's  time might be better spent on stock signings, including so-called "drive-bys", where the writer drops in, sign copies so they can slap those "autographed Copy" stickers  on, and most importantly get to know the bookseller.This last part is actually fun, because let's face it,  booksellers are people with whom writers should have a natural affinity.

In addition, as I think I've mentioned before, Stacey Cochran once set up an interesting series of events with me and Our Alex that were less reading/signings and more educational events on publishing and getting published. And they packed the house. And we sold some books.

A traditional website may not sell huge numbers of  first time readers on you, but they can be good for selling your other books to the same readers. As Toni Kelner put it: "the biggest thing [a website] does is to take a reader and turn her into a Fan. "

Now you'll notice I said "traditional" websites and blogs, by which I mean the Web 1.0, I-talk-you-listen, "here's what I've written, here's where I'll be" style  website. But, as I noted above, my original question didn't take into account more interactive web experiences, such as newsgroups like rec.arts.mystery, listservs such as DorothyL or 4MA, author website forums like Le
e Child's
, or social networks like Facebook or MySpace. 

So, new questions: 

1. Even if you're not persuaded to buy by an author's traditional website, does it make a difference if you've "met" them online, as in actually had some interaction with them? 

2. What are your favorite sites, if any,  at which to do meet n' greet authors? 

3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations? 

4. Have you ever done one of the those "live chat" thingies with an author you've never read before and did it make you go "Hmmm, I'd like to buy that book?" 

5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin' time? 

6. Isn't JD  just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet? 

24 thoughts on “The Heretic II: The Reckoning

  1. Wilfred Bereswill

    Well, JD, I HAVE bought quite a few Murderati author books after having met you all on line and at Bouchercon, so that should answer one question.

    Never done a live chat and certainly don’t have time to Twitter with the new job.

    Reply
  2. Jill

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?Yes, it does. You’re an example of that, Dusty. Without rec.arts.mystery I might not have known about your books, all of which I have. Karin Slaughter, Jane Haddam, Carl Brookins…I could probably come up with a pretty long list of authors I’ve “met” that way and then read.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?Not sure I understand the question. But Murderati, The Lipstick Chronicles, The Naked Truth, First Offenders and The Outfit are places I’ve visited because I’ve read at least one of the authors. I’ve ended up reading the others and some guest bloggers.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?Not sites, but rec.arts.mystery and 4MA.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”No.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?Complete waste of freakin’ time for selling books.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?Is this a trick question? The answer seems too easy.

    Reply
  3. Jim Winter

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    Word of mouth seems to be the best sales tool, particularly from booksellers. However, once you have them, a web presence is essential. It’s the fastest way for an author to interact with readers.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    I tend to gravitate toward the group blogs.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    Since I review, I tend to get them dumped in my mailbox. So in the interest of keeping my reviewing gigs, I’ll say January and Mystery Scene and Crimespree.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    Once. Harry Hunsicker.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    Both. I see uses for it. I just don’t have a use for it. That may change.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Ask a stupid question…

    Reply
  4. Dana King

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    Yes. I’ve bought quite a few books because I became interested in authors through their blogs or Crimespace.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    Crimespace, mostly, and author blogs, usually collaboratives like Murderati.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    Detectives Without Borders, Crime Always Pays, Murderati, The Outfit.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    No.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    CWOFT

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    I thought he was just fishing for ways to get more comments than Brett.

    Reply
  5. toni mcgee causey

    Heh. Yeah, Dusty, that one frustrated me. I wanted a brunette but Angelina (the actress) was funny and great and… blonde. We’d talked about dying her hair and she thought she could… but got scared to ruin her hair (which, frankly, I don’t blame her). I couldn’t find a professional wig and rather than make her look dumb, we went with blonde. πŸ˜‰ I still have funny discussions with some people who insist she’s blonde in the book. (I always can tell they saw they video by how determined they are.)

    1. ‘meeting them online’ — it does help if only that it brings them to my attention. That has also worked against some authors, too, which is something authors have to be aware of–if I see someone being as asshole to others or condescending, they’ll have lost sales with me and from what I can see, others, too. Everyone’s name is google-able.

    2. group blogs for me, too. Though I have a ton of people on RSS feeds.

    3. lots of mine are in the right-hand link list here on Murderati

    4. not that I can remember.

    5. Twitter: tool of Satan. (Fun trek scampering down the bunny trail of procrastination.)

    6. “And I will follow you into the dark.”

    Reply
  6. Karen Olson

    I’ve “met” quite a few fans of my books by having them Friend me on Facebook, or just drop me a note on Facebook. I’m finding that pretty interesting, because I only joined Facebook because of the peer pressure to play Scrabble. Now I have a much more legitimate reason for being there. So I tell myself.

    Reply
  7. pam

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    No. Only exception would be if we were really friends or members of a writing organization, where I’d buy the book to support that friendship.

    Otherwise, it’s always all about the writing.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    I didn’t know there were sites for this. Not sure I’d be interested. I like to read interviews or Q and A’s, so I can quickly skim them. I don’t have the time (or patience, if I’m being truthful) for a meet n greet site.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    Amazon.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    I’ve done them, but they never made me want to buy the book. They might make me curious to pick it up, but then the writing needs to engage me.

    I’m not interested in the author other than what they choose to share about their writing. The only thing that really interests me is what they write.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    I’d say give Twitter a try and see if it works for you. I’m not sure how effective it is for writers or readers. But, it is hugely effective for my day job as a headhunter. I’m on it daily, and it’s been a fantastic marketing tool.

    But, as I mentioned previously, I’m not interested in the personal details of a writers life, so for me to ‘follow’ them on Twitter, they’d need to be posting interesting content, relating to writing or to their latest books, where they’ll be speaking, etc. I am following a few authors, but they don’t post much, nothing that’s caught my eye anyway. Most of my Twitter attention goes to work related content.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Aren’t we all? πŸ™‚

    Reply
  8. ZoΓ« Sharp

    Hi Dusty

    1. Met online?It would make me maybe pick the book up the next time I’m in a bookstore, but the blogging/speaking voice is often so different from the writing voice, that I’d have to be sure I liked the latter, however charmed I was by the former, before I’d buy.

    2. Favorite sites?There are other sites than Murderati? Seriously, my time is so limited that I don’t have the luxury of cruising round the internet and I’d rather keep up with one site properly – with occasional forays onto the websites of people who comment here, than try and cover a lot of sites badly, because I know I don’t have the time to do that.

    3. Favorite sites for recommendations?The reviews in Crimespree. Knowing how reviews can vary wildly for the same book, I’m not particularly influenced by them when I’m buying.

    4. “live chat”?Erm, nope. I prefer to do the real-life, ‘live chat’, as in, actually speak to the author at a convention, and that might sway me to pick the book up and give it a try, but not to buy out of hand.

    5. Twitter?To be honest, I’ve no clue how it’s supposed to work … ;-]

    6. JD fishing?Oh yeah, but after your last triumph, who can blame you?

    Reply
  9. Louise Ure

    I have a huge affinity for authors I’ve met online, but that would only be true for the last several years that I’ve been writing myself. When I was a reader, I didn’t know authors were still alive. Never met one either in person or online.

    And Twitter is a total waste of time — not just for selling books but for the rest of our lives as well.

    Reply
  10. J.T. Ellison

    I disagree about Twitter – I’ve found that in a few instances, it’s replaced my Google Reader for news, politics, etc. I’ve also been selling books by getting myself into different forums. It’s like every other social networking medium – it is what you make of it. I’m not on there to market myself and my books, so it’s pure fun for me, and any new readers that come of it are icing. And regardless, even when we’re on wicked close deadlines, we still need to have some fun, right?

    Reply
  11. pari

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    Yes, absolutely.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    DL, Mystery Babes (private), Novelists Inc.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    Mystery Babes but that’s about it. Most of the other sites don’t do it for me because I know too many authors that use friends/readers to plant reviews.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    Nope.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    I have no idea.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Yep πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  12. PK the Bookeemonster

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?PK: Websites and blogs are tricky in a way. I do check them out regularly. I particularly like having excerpts of the books available so I can sample the wares, so to speak. Websites/blogs that are for other purposes than their positions of authors turn me off; example: if they make their political/social agenda a prominent feature, it has affected whether or not I’ll read them or read them again. “Meeting” them online works best if they’re also fans of books and not blatently promoting their books. *Real* interaction on groups means a lot rather than announcements.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    PK: 4MA, blogs both personal and group-oriented

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    PK: 4MA, Crimethrutime, Eurocrime, The Rap Sheet, Sarah Weinman’s Sunday roundup, Stop You’re Killing Me, the site that took over Cluelass’s new releases, etc.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    PK:Never participated in live chat with authors.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    PK: I think Twitter is on average a generational thing. Younger users definitely hang out; older ones don’t see the point. So use of it depends on your target audience.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    PK: no, I think this is VALUABLE research. πŸ™‚

    Reply
  13. J.D. Rhoades

    Again, I’m intrigued by the responses here. Thanks, and keep ’em coming!

    Here’s my take on Twitter: I’ve been doing it about a week, using a program called Tweetdeck which allows you to sort the users you’re following into categories. One of mine is titled “Book Business” and has “tweets” from, e.g., Publisher’s Weekly, LA Times Book section, Random House, Sarah Weinman. etc. Another is “News” and has “tweets” from every news source from the New York Times to Fox News to BBC to Al Jazeera, and that one’s like a multi-source headline news crawl (with links to the headlined stories if a headline catches my eye. For a news junkie like me, that’s a great tool. And of course, there are the fun ones like the “Friends” column to see what my far flung circle of friends is up to.

    As I noted above, some tweets have links with them. Click on them and they take you to something the Twitterer has found of interest elsewhere on the ‘net. That, I think, is where the service has real potential: when the message is not so much “Look what I’m doing” but “look at what I’ve found.”

    Like most tools, it’s all in how you use it.

    Reply
  14. Jamie Frevleletti

    Hi Dusty!

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?Absolutely.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?Don’t have any. I read some friends’ blogs, like this one.

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?None. I read reviews or speak to my friends who are avid readers. They usually steer me in the right direction.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    Nope.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    Twitter seems poised to explode. For people short on time it’s easy to maintain. As a marketing tool-eh, we’ll see.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Nah…now get back to work! πŸ™‚ Jamie

    Reply
  15. B.G. Ritts

    1. I don’t have to have personal interaction, but the reading of blogs is very informative about the person writing it. Going back a few years and reading through current postings can be very enlightening. A writer who is an ass online probably is one. That can be a turnoff. I’ve also seen posts on DotL that made me cancel a book purchase or library loan. If I like an author, I’ll try his/her book(s), unless they are outside my reading comfort zone.

    2. Bouchercons; Murderati, Kaye Barley’s blog

    3. RAM (rec.arts.mystery), DorothyL; Woodstock’s blog and reviews; Amazon or Books’n’Bytes if I want to decide which of an author’s books to start with — I’ll usually pick the one with the highest rating.

    4. No, only an author I had already read.

    5. What’s a Twitter? πŸ™‚

    6. YES; but research is important.

    Reply
  16. Rae

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    Yes, absolutely. I’m much more inclined to buy the books of people I’ve met, or know something about.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    RAM, Murderati, Naked Authors, Lee Child’s Forum

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    Everywhere, really.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    Nope. Have done live chats with authors whose work I’ve already read. They’re often disorganized and confusing – if they’re not really well moderated, they can be a mess.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    Hate Twitter with a purple passion. Takes telecommunication into the realm of the absurd. Do we really need to be bombarded with all those bytes of triviana every three seconds? How about just saving it all up for a real conversation?

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    You betcha, and it’s a great good thing πŸ˜‰

    Reply
  17. Christine Carey

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them? It makes a complete difference if I’ve “met” them online through one of the social networking sites, and the website lets me see the covers of the other books, so I might remember them next time I’m in the bookstore.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors? LJ, Blogger

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations? goodreads, lj

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?” Nope. Never done the live chat.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time? Waste of Time.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet? Probably, but so am I. =)

    Reply
  18. Toni

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    I think so. I’m a freelance writer, so I understand in a much smaller way how much of a time suck and strange experience keeping up with reader comments can be. I think it’s unrealistic to expect too much personal attention from any one writer out there, but it’s nice when someone responds, say, to a blog comment, email or “tweet” on Twitter. In fact, I can say that there’s a good number of people I follow on Twitter or blogs whose books I’d buy if they wrote one. While I don’t confuse online interaction with authors with “friendship,” it’s nice to feel a connection to a real human being and to discuss aspects of writing and reading their work.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    Can’t think of any besides blogs (see #3).

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    I don’t spend a great deal of time reading fiction or author blogs, honestly. I read blogs related to work, friends’ blogs, and other special interest ones (good TV critics, outdoor adventure, National Parks, and genre fiction).

    Murderati is my favorite of the genre fic blogs because of the quality of the posts. It’s a great way to read about not just genre fiction but the process of being a writer, so this is my favorite go-to resource. I met Toni McGee Causey a few years back via our old personal blogs, and I followed her here. In fact, I started reading your books because she plugged them here (I think it was here; it could’ve been on her own professional blog), and have the rest of the writers here in my “to read” queue. So this blog’s working, at least for one reader.

    I think what can make collaborative blogs stronger is that each voice is fresher because one person doesn’t have to keep readers entertained. There are countless blogs I’ve stopped reading because I simply got tired of hearing the same old, same old over the years.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    No. I find chats to be way more of a time suck on top of existing social media time suckage (Twitter, Facebook & blog feeds). Between that and work and personal email correspondence (all while raising 3 young kids while working from home), you’d have to chain me to my desk chair to get me to sit through a live chat.

    And I do think we’re reaching a saturation point with online interactivity; I’ve seen dozens of entries over the past year (including here) about managing online time and social networks. If it’s getting to be such a time vortex that we need to “manage” it, honestly, we’re doing it wrong. I think the good stuff–the stuff that works–will remain and the rest will fall away.

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    Brave new marketing tool AND a huge time waster if you let it become one. What people who don’t use Twitter often don’t get right away is that Twitter works best as a conversation rather than a broadcast. I’ve met other comedy writers through Twitter and we’ve taken things into Tumblr, a form of microblogging platform somewhere in between Twitter and traditional blogs. I also interact with “real life” friends on Twitter and follow a few authors and TV critics I enjoy reading. The ones who occasionally @ reply me (even if they don’t follow me, which I don’t mind), like Chicago Tribune TV writer Maureen Ryan, are the keepers, because again, people who regularly use Twitter are conversing.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Well, duh.

    Reply
  19. Alexandra Sokoloff

    1. Even if you’re not persuaded to buy by an author’s traditional website, does it make a difference if you’ve “met” them online, as in actually had some interaction with them?

    Yes, but it still needs to be a book that’s directly related to what I need for my own book right now. I know that’s awful but it’s true.

    2. What are your favorite sites, if any, at which to do meet n’ greet authors?

    Hard to keep up with more than right here, but I wish I had more time for Backspace, and I try to get to my friends’ grogs and blogs .

    3. What are your favorite sites, if any. to get recommendations?

    4 MA, DL and Mystery Babes have great reviews and recs because they’re so specific about plot.

    4. Have you ever done one of the those “live chat” thingies with an author you’ve never read before and did it make you go “Hmmm, I’d like to buy that book?”

    No, but no time…

    5. Twitter: brave new marketing tool or complete waste of freakin’ time?

    I love Twitter for its randomness and it doesn’t take any time at all, but I usually forget to go on it.

    6. Isn’t JD just fishing for excuses to waste more time hanging out on the Internet?

    Yeah, well, people who live in glass houses and all that.

    Reply
  20. Fran

    First, about the book trailer from a bookseller perspective? They’re fun. But we don’t use them as a marketing tool. Our shop has a blog that authors who come in to sign are kindly coerced into doing some shameless self-promotion, and if they have a book trailer, I embed it. So the folks who hit our blog might be intrigued by your book trailer, but as a tool for us? Not so much.

    On to the survey.

    1. Yes. “Meeting” authors in non-traditional website venues have gotten me to read their books. It’s how I “met” and read several authors, and I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity. With so many new novels coming out, blogs like this and multi-purpose sites have helped many of you stand out.

    2. Favorite sites? Well, this one, obviously. And Naked Authors, the Kill Zone, Witchy Chicks, Running with Quills. And from there I’ve glommed onto some personal, individual sites, especially when the blogging there is entertaining and *ahem* somewhat edgy/snarky and intelligent.

    3. Reviews? I read Marilyn Stasio and sometimes David Montgomery, but for the most part I avoid reviews. Part of my job is to review, so I don’t want to plagairize someone else’s review, if that makes any sense. I get recommendations from sales reps and colleagues — I always listen closely when Janine recommends something — but I don’t have time to find out what other folks are saying.

    4. No live online chats. I’d rather talk to people face-to-face.

    5. Twitter makes me cranky. But that may be because A) I’m older than the average Twitterer, and B) I haven’t figured it out yet.

    6. Hey, you learn things hanging out on the internet, and who knows where the next great story idea’s gonna come from!

    Reply
  21. I. J. Parker

    Considering the number of responses to both questionnaires: my compliments. This blog actually attracts people. And here’s the lesson: people like to be asked about things. Will they then buy books? Perhaps.

    Reply

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