I’m wondering if this is a me thing or if others do this as well: There are some authors that I follow closely even though I’ve never read one of their books. I’m not talking about casually following on Twitter because you entered a giveaway somewhere (though maybe that’s where it starts?), but really following them—paying attention to new releases and being excited (or at the very least, intrigued) when they have a new book coming out, interacting with them on Twitter in some way, shape or form, etc.
This idea for a discussion post came to me today when I went to a post for a giveaway of Paula Stokes’ latest book. She’s one of these authors for me: I follow her on Twitter (and actually pay attention to her tweets—I’ve even retweeted her a few times), I always pay attention when there’s a tour or a giveaway for one of her books, and every time I see one of her new releases coming out, I think, “Oh, cool! A new Paula Stokes book! I really want to read that!” Except I never have. Yet.
Now here’s the thing: I have it in my head that Paula Stokes is an awesome author and this sense that I love her books, even though I’ve never actually read one.
How does this phenomenon occur? I have theories:
- Hype: I’ve seen Paula’s books around. My blogger friends have reviewed them and thought highly of them. There are certainly authors who get more hype (for instance, Marie Lu, who is another author who I follow closely even though I haven’t read anything by her), but Stokes’ name is certainly not foreign to me. Once you see an author’s work featured in enough places, you kind of start to feel like you know something about their work.
- Author Events: I met Paula at Anderson Bookshop’s YA Lit Conference and I heard her speak on at least one panel (maybe more?). Hearing an author talk about her book (in person) makes you feel that much more compelled to read it and it makes you feel like you know that author more deeply. Unfortunately, at a big event like that one, it was impossible to buy books from ALL of the authors I was interested in (and still be allowed to come back home), but Paula Stokes moved higher on my radar.
- Marketing: This is related to the first two things I mentioned, but it’s a bit more specific. The more marketing an author and/or publisher does, the more likely I am to see those new books, right? Especially since I include giveaways and pre-order deals in my Sunday Post, I see them often! (In fact, I happen to know that Stokes has pre-order deals for two of her books going on right now, if you’re interested.)
- Great social media presence: If an author I follow on social media on a whim is engaging, I’m more likely to pay attention to them later. (One great example of this is Emery Lord, who I have actually read finally—The Names They Gave Us was amazing, just like I hoped).
One of these days, I’m going to actually buy one of Paula Stokes’ books. I’m going to read it too. And I have a feeling I’ll love it. Have you read Stokes? What book should I start with?
Do any of you follow authors you haven’t actually read? Do you almost feel like you have read their books, or is that just me? I want to know!
This post has been linked to the 2017 Discussion Challenge.