Friday, April 2, 2010

Hug An Author

Have you hugged an author today? Well, have you? Let me explain. I was talking to someone the other day about the use of reviews and I decided it was important enough to post here. You see, no matter if your favorite authors are brand new to the market or on the tops of the bestseller lists, reviews are REALLY important to them. Why? It is a widely established and heralded fact that books are primarily sold by word of mouth. Yes, that means the words of your mouth are just as important as a blurb in Publisher’s Weekly. And the advent of the internet has made reviews even more important.
Amazon, for instance, is a HUGE factor these days. Giving a book a “one to five star rating” doesn’t require you to leave your name, but it leaves a lasting impression on future buyers. And clicking a “tag” to help better define the genre and subject matter helps Amazon’s recommendation generator. So, if you tag a book as Romantic Suspense, Amazon will recommend it to someone who has bought similarly tagged books.
If you can take a moment to add a written review to the page that only helps more. A lot of people, including myself, will read the written reviews on Amazon, even if we don’t plan on buying the product from Amazon. A short paragraph is very useful. A lot of other websites, like BarnsandNoble.com and Christianbook.com, have added review sections as well.
Do you have a blog? Write a review on your favorite books! The people who read your blog value your opinion and might buy the book on the ground of your word. Of course, just telling people you know about your favorite books is great too!
These small acts of kindness really add up to a big hug for authors. And of course you could add a little extra love to the day by contacting your favorite authors and telling them how much you enjoyed their books. Most have websites now with contact information.
Publishers like proof that people actually enjoy the books they sell and sometimes authors need a little encouragement, especially when they are facing yet another edit (yes, I’m speaking from experience ;).
So, go ahead, bless an author today!
And tell me what makes you chose a book. Do you read reviews? Take recommendations from friends?

Now, here’s my plug for the day. I recently picked up A Bride Most Begrudging by Deeanne Gist and am here to say it has jumped up to the top of my favorite books list! I wouldn’t say historical romances are my favorite genre, but this book totally won me over.

11 comments:

Lydia Kang said...

I've never done a book review on my blog but I may now!

septembermom said...

I run into so many wonderful bloggers who share their insights on books and poetry. I have added a number of books to my reading list based on their recommendation. A novel becomes a real prospect for me when I get someone's personal take on it. Hope you get many "hugs" :)

Emily Ann Benedict said...

Blogs have become very big in the review world. Big enough for Thomas Nelson publishing to start their own program that gives free books to bloggers.

I think it's because, after reading a blog long enough, we can get a sense of the blogger's taste and whether or not they match with ours. :)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Great point! I am a huge reader of the reviews on Amazon and other places - huge. My husband rarely purchases anything without reading reviews first. We SHOULD take time to write more of them. :-)

Brianna said...

I have written book reviews for small Christian publications before, but have never written any online. Though, if I had a blog I imagine one of my topics would definately be the books I'm reading. ;-) And when I read a book that particularly impacts me or ends up on my favorite books list, I usually rave about it to friends!
Do I read book reviews? Yes and no... It depends on the book and how much information I know about it. I usually only read reviews if I'm unsure about the book's content. Otherwise I go by my own judgement.
Do I take book recommendations from friends? Again, it depends on the book. If a book recommended to me is completely not my taste, I won't even bother to look it up, but if it is I just might. ;-)

Kara said...

I haven't done many book reviews on my blog, but would love to do more. I really enjoy reading other peoples reviews because I find books I might not ever have found. So glad Warren did a review of yours, can't wait to read it!

T. Anne said...

I DO review. I love to review the work of my friends and I am always kind. Thank goodness I've never ben given a reason not to be because I'm not sure if I can. ;) You are right, reviews are the best kind of author hug!

Emily Ann Benedict said...

Yes, it's great when we can share new authors. Sometimes I've never heard of the authors my friends love, but I'm glad they introduced me.

I'm glad I've never had to post a bad review either! :P If I don't like a book, I just won't mention it.

Elana Johnson said...

Dude, I feel an idea brewing in my brain. Brewing, brewing...Thank you!

Warren Baldwin said...

Emily Ann,

So true! A review certainly does communicate value and good will to an author.

Be sure to mention my review of your wonderful book. I'll put the link here: http://warrenbaldwin.blogspot.com/2010/03/only-angels-are-bulletproof-by-emily.html

I have your two reviews of my book post on my blog on the right hand column. I appreciated them greatly. wb

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I recently started reviewing on my blog YA novels I've read and love. The comments have been great. People who hadn't thought of reading the book before have added it to their reading list.