Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Energizer Bunnies

Authors are hardworking people. We go and go and go, putting in long hours, driving hundreds of miles, hunching over our computers seven days a week. Most of our time isn't spent writing, it's devoted to getting our names out there and establishing reader bases. The publishers expect it and most of us are happy to oblige. Even when we find out our publishers aren't doing much for us other than sending out review copies. We dig in.

At first, I worried about speaking events and putting myself out there - not exactly in my comfort zone. But over time, I grew to love the promotional part of the business almost as much as I enjoy writing. Meeting readers and booksellers and other authors is fun.

When Murder Passes the Buck came out in 2005 and I went on the road to promote it in the Michigan Upper Peninsula, my editor told me I was Midnight Ink's highest selling author before and during the trip. Wow, it worked. All that time, money, and commitment paid off (at least while I was traveling).

But times have changed in 5 short years. I've been to events for myself and other authors where very few people show up. Is everyone living in virtual reality online? Where did they go?

Which brings me to a decision I have to make soon and I'd appreciate your input. Now's the time to figure out how much effort to put into touring for September's release of Buzz Off. And that's where you come in. Your answers to the following three questions will help me decide. So here we go:
  • Do you go to bookstores when authors visit? 
  • Do you attend library talks and presentations?
  • Do you discover new authors through blog tours?