Although my example today comes from a traditionally published author, the contest we’re discussing today reminded me of how often authors–indie and traditional alike–forget to engage their readers. Creating occasions like contests, give-aways, and cover-reveals not only help you find your audience and spread the word, they help you interest and engage your readers.
And what do readers love? Being engaged. They just don’t know it until you do it.
So really, it’s a win-win.
Keeping that in mind, I wanted to indulge this blog with a personal favorite going on right now.
The Paper Magician Contest!
The first three chapters of the paper magician had me over the moon for the voice, characters, and genius but subtle world-building. I’ll admit the pacing fell short for me after that, but then came the redemption—THE GLASS MAGICIAN!
Did it improve upon the romance and character growth?
Did it turn me into a fan and make me want to take up origami?
Yes. Yes it did.
In fact, I’m so excited for the last in the series, I’m considering taking out my own precious time to create a piece of fan art to enter into *drum roll please* Charlie Holmberg’s fanart contest of THE PAPER MAGICIAN series~!
I love it when authors do this sort of thing, and I have no shame in admitting the first thing I did after putting down the first installment was check for some great fan art of Emery and Ceony’s subtle, powerful, growing love.
I found the internet shockingly blank. Which is simply unforgivable, considering the art in this story and the talent of artists around the world. Ms. Holmberg must feel similarly, because the prizes for this baby are amazing!
More details in Holberg’s blog (http://myselfaswritten.blogspot.com).
With this contest in mind, Charlie Holmberg is doing two things right: 1) Encouraging readers to celebrate their fandom 2) Providing free incentives (free signed books, memorabilia, etc.). Often authors underestimate the power of a “fandom,” but it is the best marketing your book can receive because it’s your fans coming together to celebrate the world you’ve made.
Next week, we’ll get more into how all authors can understand and utilize fandoms.
Look forward to it! And as an indulgent shout out, try picking up The Paper Magician. I certainly believe it deserves a fandom.