Since I became a published author, I’ve had the pleasure of a lot of great people supporting my book and me, including a failed campaign to get me on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report – still, it’s the thought that counts!
It’s great when someone takes the time out of their lives to spread the word about your book. After being on the receiving end of such generosity, I have vowed to give back to the authors that I enjoy. You should too!
Here are a few ways to support an author:
1) Buy their book – That’s kind of obvious isn’t it? If you don’t buy their book, there is a chance they won’t get to write another.
2) Ask your library to carry their book – Selling into libraries is really important for an author. You might think less folks will buy the book if they can read it from the library, but there are lots of libraries and they are an important outlet for publishers to rely upon for sales. Unlike bookstores, libraries won’t return the book to the publisher for a full refund. Also, while sales are important, most authors are passionate about their books and don’t care whether or not you paid $25 for their book or checked it out of your library, just as long as you read it. Libraries tend to be more than accommodating; one user request and they’ll typically order the book.
I received the below photo from a reader the other day with a note saying that the Indianapolis Library is prominently displaying WAIW? I couldn’t be happier.
3) Review their books on any, some, or all of the following: GoodReads, LibraryThing, Shelfari, Amazon, Borders, and Barnes & Noble – This gets the word out about the book, and it also helps potential readers decide whether or not they want to read the book. I’m currently reading this book based on a GoodReads recommendation.
4) Email them – There are few things that can make my day like a note from a reader. Whether it’s praise, questions, arguments, or further discussion, I enjoy hearing from someone that came across WAIW? out there in the real world (especially when that someone lives in the Cayman Islands and offers for your family to visit!).
5) Read their blog or follow them on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, (insert social network of choice)
I do all of these things much more now, either to ensure good karma, or prevent bad karma – not sure which. If you’ve got any more to add, let me know.