Monday, November 22, 2010

Carrot & Stick

I have a favor to ask of you: it's not really much and this time of year, you might be spending a lot of time in the particular location anyway. I have a birthday wish. I realise it's a few weeks away yet, but you need some preparation time. The good news is that it costs you nothing but a small amount of time (otherwise I'd be hitting you up for donations to Heifer International or Kiva for micro-loans).

As you know, there are more places than ever to get the word out on your books and products, and even more people trying to do the same. It's hard to get a signal through all the noise. But there are a few things that will help get the word out on my behalf: tags and reviews.

Over at Amazon, it is possible to tag items so people know this book is in the same category as this other one. The more tags -- and the more agreement about the appropriateness of tags -- the better, as people are more likely to find your book in searches ("if you liked X you may also enjoy Y"). So if you have some time on your hands, I'd love more tags for all my books on Amazon.

And reviews! They needn't be elaborate, but they are helpful to have there so people have some idea what the book is like; be creative. Once you're on a roll, consider adding reviews (they could be the same ones) to places like GoodReads and Library Thing. Be sure to friend me there, too. Most of my Library Thing entries have been done by the lovely grad students (thank you!).

Thanks in advance for your help! It's the best birthday present I could get (other than a big lottery win -- I can hope).

Now the carrot: I hope you've all seen the new series Sherlock which revamped Conan Doyle's stories for the 21st Century. Fun stuff! Sherlocking is a fan site for show and they ran a fan fiction contest recently (no, not the naughty kind). I had been poked on Twitter to submit a story but with one thing and another, I nearly forgot until the last day. So, not my best work, I suppose -- and it may not make much sense to someone who's not seen the show -- but the kind of exercise that can be fun in a thousand words or less. So here it is:

"A Charming Situation": Holmes and Watson visit the London Zoo

Enjoy! If you prefer something less linear, drop by my page at the New Absurdist. Or if steampunk is more your style, drop by the serial. I think I finally figured out where I was going off the rails there: I got sidetracked on Helen's father before I developed her enough. That's the thing with first drafts; they seldom stay that way.


Todd Mason said...

We shall see what we can do...a taggart I shall be...

C. Margery Kempe said...

I am grateful for any help.