With Still Water now out for a few months (in Canada) and a few weeks (in the US), I’m beyond grateful for all the work my friends, family and readers have done to help get the word out. I’m often asked what readers can do to help support a writer when their book first comes out. Here are some excellent ways you can boost the signal:
1. ASK ABOUT IT: If you’re in a bookstore, ask the bookseller if they have copies of the novel. Same goes with libraries. There are SO many new releases in a week or month or year that brick and mortar booksellers and even libraries cannot possibly house them all. Often it takes readers asking for titles to put them on the right radar.
2. INVITE, FOLLOW & SHARE: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have become KEY ways for writers - including me! - to share news about their work as well as my writing life and process. Building a following depends mostly on word of mouth. Facebook is particularly helpful because anyone can invite anyone else to like a page. You can invite any friends who might be interested by going to my page (CLICK HERE) and clicking on “Invite your friends to like this page” in the right hand column then selecting some (or all!) of your friends. Both my Facebook and Instagram accounts are @amystuartwriter and my Twitter is @amyfstuart. I try to be very responsive and will often like and retweet or share posts by readers.
3. REVIEW: Reviews are a major way to help promote a book. Most online retailers use algorithms so that once a book hits a certain number of reviews it will appear way more frequently in searches for similar genre titles. After you’ve read the book, post a review/rating of the book on Amazon, Indigo, Barnes and Noble or any other online review forum. On Goodreads, please add Still Water (or Still Mine!) and review them if you’ve read them!
4. HOST A BOOK CLUB: I’m always grateful when I hear of a book club reading one of my novels. They are an excellent way to spread the word on a novel and to connect with readers. I've got a section on my website devoted to Book Clubs and will do my best to join yours if you pick one of my novels to read.
In the few years since I became a published writer, I've learned just how important readers and word-of-mouth are to a book's success. Every little bit counts! :)