Best book, author, and reader Twitter feeds

Are you tweeting now, and exploring who to follow?  Here’s a helpful link shared on Twitter by @thebookmaven, Bethanne Patrick, founder of the Friday Reads communities on Facebook and Twitter: “50 Addictive Twitter Feeds for Bookworms“.  It’s a good directory to browse for any author on Twitter.

Categories are Authors, Booksellers & Publishers, Reviewers & Book Lovers, News, and Groups.

In the Groups category are online communities and book clubs, including @fridayreads.

Here is the original tweet by @thebookmaven:!/thebookmaven/status/118682639992496128

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Roundup of good advice: digital strategy for authors

This is a regular feature of links to helpful content related to digital strategy for published authors, and other items of interest like interviews with other authors and book industry news.

Many authors wonder about the best way to represent themselves online. Should you have a clear distinction between your private self and your public identity? Ideally, you will one day have many more fans than you can maintain a one-to-one relationship with, so I encourage authors to develop a channel of communication that serves and grows their existing audience with a mix of relevant news and just enough personal disclosures to keep it human and enjoyable as a medium for social exchange. You choose where to draw the line. While I often post where I’m having lunch and with whom as a way of giving attention to places and people who are deserving of it, I would rarely offer more than a vague sketch of someone with a role in my personal life. The content that you choose to post via whatever social-media platform you choose should comprise whatever you are comfortable with, and the disclosures that feel natural and pleasurable to you.

Also, on event promotion:

A consistent theme I hear from authors grappling with this new landscape is their fear of overpromoting their work. But very few people, in my opinion, correctly promote themselves enough. Perhaps it’s my profession that colors my perspective, or my having received one too many e-mails on the day of the reading or book launch. The correct timeline for promoting an event, by the way, is to send out details one month in advance, with a reminder two weeks later, then a few days prior to the event. Linking to a Facebook invitation in subsequent status updates does the trick. Consistency is key.

  • Looking for a book blogger to review your book?  Check out the 2011 short list compiled in various categories, from Book Blogger Appreciation Week.  BBAW occurs every September, and was founded in 2008 by Amy Riley of the My Friend Amy blog “to recognize the hard work and contribution of book bloggers”.  Also read “How to find literary fiction book bloggers to review your book” for more listings.
  • On this same topic: Advice on pitching bloggers: “Top Five Things I’ve Learned About Working with Book Bloggers
  • Steve Bennett’s 5 reasons why an author needs a website:  “Yep, You Need a Book Web Site“.  This is not a recent post, but remains a solid argument in favor.  I would just add that there are some compelling free options for a website these days.  WordPress is free.  Having a site named is better than having no site at all, and there are ways you can leverage it as a website platform to save you time (for example, say you’ve got a new book review out — put a link up as a post in your WordPress site, and it can propagate automatically to Facebook, Twitter, your Amazon Author page, your email subscribers, and so on).  Having said all this about WordPress, I should mention there are companies out there like Steve Bennett’s — you can pay them to set up a website for you.

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How to find literary fiction book bloggers to review your book

I’ve compiled here a list of resources to help you find a reviewer.  But first, a few important points to keep in mind when pitching a book blogger:

  • Look for the blogger’s query guidelines, outlining the process you should follow to propose your book for their review. The process might be to send an email. It might be to fill out an online form.
  • Offer only a free copy of your book.
  • When a blogger reviews your book, follow them on social media channels and retweet / share their updates that announce and promote your book’s review.
  • For more on how to craft a book review pitch, there are many articles and blog posts out there — check out Paula Krapf’s “7 Simple Steps to Getting Your Book Reviewed“. Continue reading

Inspiring find: a 1,000 page beer guide by suds expert Garrett Oliver

This fall, you may confuse the bar for the bookstore.

In between tending to brew kettles and fermentation tanks, Brooklyn Brewery brew master Garrett Oliver has been hitting the books: The suds expert spent the past four years editing the massively comprehensive The Oxford Companion to Beer.

The nearly 1,000-page, A-to-Z reference guide digs deep into the minutiae of brewing and beer culture, covering topics that range from cask-conditioned ales to drinking traditions around the globe.

This is an inspiring find from TastingTable.

Author’s guide to’s new @author feature

A new way for authors to engage with their readers is through a new @author feature on So far it’s in limited beta, with only a handful of participating authors, but hopefully soon will be more widely available for published authors who would enjoy connecting with readers in a Q&A format. This @author feature will allow readers to post a question to you the author, and as the author your set of answered questions will be available to readers from within your Amazon Author Page. Continue reading

10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books from @TheAtlantic

An inspired article in the Atlantic by Tim Carmody from last year that I wanted to share here with authors: “10 Reading Revolutions Before E-Books“. It’s an entertaining and insightful roundup of reading revolutions. Here’s a pic from the article, a student reading microfilm in the 1970s, an image from the London School of Economics library archives.

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Author’s guide to Facebook’s new Subscribe feature

It was Wednesday, Sept 14, 2011, when Facebook introduced the Subscribe button, and in doing so changed the debate on the value of the Facebook profile vs. Facebook business page for authors, which I discussed in an earlier article, “Author’s guide to Facebook account vs Facebook Pages“.

With this new feature, when you see a Subscribe button on an author’s profile, this means a fan of the author can click the Subscribe button to begin seeing the author’s public updates right in the user’s own News Feed. Continue reading

Roundup of good advice: digital strategy for authors

This is a regular feature of links to helpful content related to digital strategy for published authors, and other items of interest like interviews with other authors and book industry news.

  • Everyone’s an expert at something.  You, the published author, are certainly an expert at something as well, so join HARO (Help A Report Out), a free service, for the opportunity to become a quoted source in a story, effectively promoting yourself and your work.  There are lots of articles out there about how authors and others who are experts at something can leverage HARO.  This blog post, “How To Use HARO To Boost Your Visibility“, though targeted to online PR, is worth a read.
  • Good advice on good manners:  The 10 Commandments of Social Networking for Writers by Jason Pinter (if you’re on Twitter, you can follow him there). Jason Pinter is a literary agent with the Waxman Agency, and the bestselling author of the Henry Parker thriller series, as well as the upcoming Zeke Bartholomew series for Middle Grade readers and the Great Divide trilogy for Young Adults.
  • Although this is an article written for tech-savvy journalists, it has sage advice. It dovetails into discussions around platforms for author websites.  From Allan Hoffman, on “9 reasons to switch from Drupal to WordPress“.  The intro:

Yes, your content matters, but so does your choice of a content-management system (CMS). This choice can influence everything from how often you and your staff post stories to how much time — and money — you’ll need to spend wrangling bug fixes, compatibility issues and design snafus. Choose a CMS that’s a wrong fit, and you’ll regret it.


A few hidden gems on author websites

I came across an inspiring roundup of unexpected offerings on author websites — Joanne LaSpina’s “Favorite Authors Tempt Readers Online“. Her list of hidden gems includes Stephenie Meyer’s (the Twilight author) 264-page draft available online, something from Edward’s perspective.  Jodi Picoult podcasts on a variety of topics.  James Patterson is offering the first 20 chapters of his newest family book, Middle School — The Worst Years of My Life.  And more.

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How to merge duplicate Facebook author and book pages

Have you searched for your name on Facebook, and the name of your book? You’re likely to discover a mess of pages. Some of this can be cleaned up. This guide will take you through how to find and merge duplicate pages, using a search for “Kathryn Stockett”. Continue reading