I’m always curious on what prompts a reader to pick up a certain book. My own process is typically a combination of things ranging from recommendations, blurbs and reviews to startling covers and general curiosity.
These days, I’d have to say reviews are what prompts me the most on whether or not to pick up a book, but it wasn’t always that way. Before the birth of digital books, I would spend hours in the library or the bookstore skimming the stacks, looking for the cover, jacket or title that would catch my eye and have me plucking the book off the shelf to read the back cover blurb. While I love being able to carry 300+ books in my purse and not throw my back out, I do have to admit that I miss those days. I still buy the occasional book in print and I love, love, love to get the books my author friends write in print. I have them all gathered together on my bookshelf so I can tell people, Hey! I know those authors!
Browsing the digital way is not as easy. I do enjoy Amazon’s feature that shows what customers who bought this book also bought. That often leads me to finding similar stories to read, but if I’m looking for something completely different, it’s much harder to browse unless I am looking for a specific author.
The lack of browsing definitely hurts the indie/small press author as well because it makes it all that much more difficult for readers to find your book. That’s why reviews, whether it’s from people you friend on Goodreads or from book bloggers you follow, is my current go-to process for finding new books to read.
How do you find something new to read? Are you old school, hitting up the library and few remaining bookstores? Do you search for new books by authors you already know? Or are you scouring the web for reviews and recommendations?
I’m excited to announce that my new and improved cover for Tears of a Clown, created by the fabulous Mallory Rock, won a Gold Star award this month from the Book Designer.
The judge commented on it as well: JF: Love the playfulness and clear communication of this ebook cover, and the many little touches that make it work. ★
Mallory deserves an award just for putting up with my constant changes! Haha but she did a great job and I’m very happy with the result. Glad to see her getting recognition for her hard work.
As last stated, life has gotten very crazy lately: a move, family issues, being sick, etc. The writing has come to a complete standstill. I haven’t attended my writing group in the past couple of weeks for several reasons, not all of them good. Sales have slowed a little and all these things together were starting to weigh me down.
I had to take a step back and look at all that’s been going on. It really has been a lot and I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s not worth it to beat myself up over it. I may have consciously chosen to not write at times, but unpacking boxes or unwinding with the boy and watching TV has its place too, to keep me sane and get me to a healthier place.
Just because you take a break doesn’t mean you’re never going to get back to it. Because writing isn’t what pays my bills, I don’t have to feel guilty about not putting more time into it at the moment. I’ve got tons of stories to finish and more ideas brewing, so it’s not like I’m going to abandon writing, but I’ve sternly told myself that a break is okay and there’s no need to compare myself to others who are churning out several books a year and constantly writing, writing, writing. I am myself and no one else. I have other needs that have to be taken care of in order to be able to focus on writing again.
Don’t feel like taking a break is giving up. It’s just recharging your batteries and clearing your mind. It’s letting the ideas churn and grow before those voices in your head are so loud you have no choice but to get back to it. It’s taking care of yourself. It’s not a bad thing and it’s not failure.
As some of you may have noticed, blog posts have not been as consistent as they should be lately. I apologize for that and will work on getting back to normal, but life has been and is going to continue to be crazy and stressful and emotional for the next couple of months. I’d rather not go into detail at this time about all that’s going on, but I hope you guys can stick with me through it until things settle down and I can get back to more regular posting.
I appreciate your patience and feel free to use the blog or other social media means to contact me. It might take me a little longer to respond but I will get back to you!