THE SOULLESS: They prey upon society’s outcasts--the lonely, the desperate, the guilty--feeding upon the rage and lust and fear hidden in these human hearts. Once they find a victim, they are able to erase the boundary between impulse and action, turning an angry thought into murderous rage and a simple desire into manic obsession.
Only one person understands the danger. Evander Calhoun has spent a lifetime protecting his unsuspecting neighbors from these evil spirits, but--after a nearly a century of service--the old man no longer has the strength to continue the fight.
Evander must find a replacement. But, despite the fact that his master was a nearly crippled, illiterate, farmhand, Evander staunchly refuses to consider anyone but a strong, young male for an apprentice. In fact, he is so blinded by prejudice that he is apt to overlook the best chance he has of saving his beloved town.
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Book promotion is very important to writers, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be a chore. And when you enjoy doing something, you lessen your chances of burning out. Here are five ways that you can connect with readers that should be fun for you as well.
1. Join online book discussion groups. I’m not just a writer; I’m a reader as well! I love discussing new books, recommending books I love, and talking about my favorite characters. Joining online book sites like GoodReads and Shelfari allows you to find other readers who share your reading interests. The point here is not to make drive-by promotional comments or to mention, “I’m a writer” in every thread. No, it’s to create connections with readers by engaging in conversations about the books you love.
2. Chase a meme. Bloggers, especially book bloggers, use memes (daily topics or question that are passed from blog to blog in hopes of going viral) as a way to lead readers from one blog to another. When you chase down a meme (travel from one blog to another, following the thread of posts relating to the meme) you can discover a huge number of book-related websites. You will not only meet other readers, but you may also connect with bloggers who are willing to review your latest release or host an interview.
3. Host a giveaway. At least once a month, I host a giveaway with one of my books as a prize. Oftentimes, I will do this as a part of a blog hop. (A blog hop is similar to a meme in that several blogs link together so that readers can ‘hop’ from one blog to another in order to enter as many contests as possible.) At other times, I will write a guest post for a blog and then offer a prize as well. Not only is it fun to give away prizes, but giving away copies will put your book into readers’ hands. Hopefully, that will land you either a good review or, at the very least, a little word of mouth.
4. Start a Poll. Engage your readers by asking for their input. Maybe you’ll have them help you decide which cover you should use for your next release, or maybe it’s as simple as asking what book you should read next. What a poll does is build a conversation between you and your followers. After all, everyone loves to give an opinion!
5. Talk about something other than writing and reading! It’s easy to forget that there is a world outside the written page. Readers have a variety of interests, and it’s wonderful to connect with them on a level that doesn’t involve books. I’ve also been known to start Twitter conversations about topics like Tim Gunn, cats, and chocolate. Also, as an avid knitter, I interact with other knitters and knitting threads throughout the Web. Whenever I join social sites (such as Pinterest or Ravelry), I make sure that my profile includes links to my website and books. That way, if people are interested, they can check out my work.
Remember, promotion isn’t about shoving your book in people’s faces and screaming, “Look at me! I’m a writer!” No, it’s about making connections and building relationships. Building a fan base can very time consuming, but it can also be rewarding and, most importantly, fun!
You have a chance to win a FREE eBook copy of The Soulless!
1) Only ONE comment per person.
2) Please include your email, if not listed in your profile post link. You can post it like this to avoid spammers: yourname at yourdomain dot com.
3) I’ll announce the winner on Friday, February 3, 2012. The contest ends at midnight on Thursday, February 2, 2012.
4) In 100 words or less, tell me how you would protect your own town from evil spirits.
Good luck and have fun my wily demon hunters!