I recently came across an excellent blog post by Dublin author Laurence O’Bryan. Aptly titled The Accessible Author it summed up, better than I ever could, how the dynamics have changed between reader and author. It’s something I’ve thought about a lot and have wanted to share with readers in the hope that contact between the story creator and the end user will increase.
Laurence provides the perfect backdrop for the debate. Click here to read his blog in full and to check out that I’m not plagiarising his thoughts!
Authors can no longer afford to be isolated from their readers. The instant connectivity available these days through a host of social platforms means they don’t have to be. You’ll find most authors have their own Website, or Facebook page, or Twitter profile or Blog site. Most will have them all – and many are also unafraid of publicising their email address.
You can be forgiven for an initial cynical reaction that puts you in the camp of those who believe authors use these mediums for the sole purpose of promoting themselves and their books in the hope that you will add to their income.
Although this might be the sole motive in a number of cases, I’ve seen enough evidence to suggest there is an earnest attempt by the majority of authors to create a relationship with their readers.
Authors, by nature, are a hard-working, semi-reclusive lot who need to withdraw for long periods into the worlds they create. When they emerge with a finished product they can’t wait to put it in front of the masses, and to discover whether or not it finds universal favour.
Believe it or not, the litmus test for authors is not the money they make, because in most cases this won’t amount to a hill of beans. No, the real discovery for authors is in learning what readers actually think of their work.
Feedback is what authors thrive on. Like everyone else, they like to be praised for their work, and will even use constructive criticism to help improve their next book.
I’ll let you in on a secret. If you post a book review or leave a message on an author’s website or blogsite, he or she will read it, even before the proverbial ink dries!
And ten chances to one, they will reply to you.
Reader feedback sustains authors in a way like never before. The book market is becoming a cluttered place so everyone is looking for a distinctive edge. The only way they can achieve this is by showing genuine interaction with their readers.
Even the biggest and best names in the industry are setting aside time every day to check on reader feedback.
If you’ve recently read a book why not go an extra yard? Revisit the Amazon site, give it a rating and leave a review (a few lines will do). Or look up the author’s Facebook page or website and tell them what you think.
It really will make a difference.
Please let me know what you think. Have you posted a book review? Have you attempted to contact an author? Have you visited an author’s website recently? Use the ‘Leave A Reply’ box below.