Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Links That Made Me Think

One thing I've always loved about the online writing community is that you guys make me think. I've learned so much from hanging out here for 4+ years. And since this morning turned out far more pukey than planned, I thought I'd share a few links I enjoyed while tucked in bed with my iPod.

First off, Kristan Hoffman has a lovely post about books meeting one of two goals: a book you want to read or a book people need.

I totally agree, and I think there's a particular sweet spot where you can meet BOTH. I think that might be why I'm so attached to SIDEKICK, which I just started editing yet again. It's a book I wanted to read AND thought might be useful for teens. No wonder I'm so passionate about it! I wish I could always meet those two in one book, but I think that's hard to do all the time. Both ends have great rewards, though, at least from what I've seen.

Second, Kirsten Hubbard posted a great article at YA Highway about Why Authors Disappear after that book deal comes.

Let's just say it totally resonated with me, since I am right there, flailing about in new waters and trying to figure out how to swim again. I worry constantly that people will be upset with me, when all my "issues" really have nothing to do with anyone but myself. I like to compare it to going to college—it's not that selling a book is a bad thing (Obviously it's good!), but it comes with a lot of new adjustments. I'm a freshman again. There's a learning curve, and I'm not exactly performing at the top of my class when it comes to figuring it all out. I really hope I find my comfort zone sooner rather than later.

And finally, Lisa Schroeder posted a really interesting article on her experience with Goodreads ads.

I must admit that Goodreads kind of freaks me out, and I have yet to join because I hear a lot of stuff about the mean reviews and such. But I really appreciate Lisa's positive outlook on the site, and her explanation that it really is one of the few bigger places for readers to gather. Why not take advantage of that? Maybe the pros do outweigh the cons. It was so cool to see that her one ad seemed to have some impact on her newest novel's visibility, and for the affordable price it really felt worth it to me. I might have to toss my fears aside and take the plunge into Goodreads sometime.

So there you have it. Thanks for making me think today, guys!


  1. Great links Natalie--thanks. I have to admit that when I first read your comments many months ago about nastiness out here in Cyberia, I didn't imagine how mean-spirited and unrelenting it can be. But I've had a taste of it this week, and I now understand wanting to "disappear." Once you're published, you've got a target on your forehead. It's scary.

  2. Thanks for the link love! And yes, I completely agree, some books can/will be both. (And usually those rock. ;))

    Off to check out the other posts. So honored to be in such good company!

  3. Thanks for the great links Natalie. And I think you're doing great with your debut. I'm sure you'll teach the rest of us how to do it right.

  4. On Goodreads, you really can participate as much or as little as you want. If you don't want to read reviews, you don't have to. I have a presence there with clearly-defined boundaries. I do love holding giveaways there.

  5. Thanks for the post, Natalie! I hear you about Goodreads. Haven't bit the bullet yet. I've also heard about potential fallout from putting ourselves out here online...not looking forward to that day!

  6. I've actually been meaning to read that YA Highway post all day now... Will head that way momentarily.

    I use Goodreads a lot and LOVE it, but I also work in a library so it has quite a bit of use for me. And I agree with her post. Yes, there are negative reviews, but there are negative reviews everywhere and a lot of the times you can go to a person's page and see that they gave all the bestsellers one star just to stand out and get attention.

    On that same note, I've given up on giving out star ratings because it's become to difficult for me. But I don't have to rate books to review them, which is a big plus for me.

    Anywho, I hope you get to feeling better and are less pukey and more peppy!

  7. I always assumed Goodreads was a great site because readers gather to talk about books - I hadn't thought of it as a place where an author might read lots of negative reviews in one place! I see how that could be discouraging.

    Hope you join, though - I've discovered great books there, and it's one more place for people to see your book!

  8. Thanks for the links!

    Goodreads has been, for my experience, more productive then not, though there are certainly some drawbacks.