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Named to "Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites," this #SharingwithWriters blog is a way to connect with my readers and fellow writers, a way to give the teaching genes that populate my DNA free rein. Please feel free to add to the conversation using the very tiny "comment" link. For those interested in editing and grammar, go to http://thefrugaleditor.blogspot.com.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

So How DO You Get People to Buy and Read Your Book

Why People Buy Books

Guest blogged by

Valerie Allen, codirector of the
Brevard Authors’ Book Fair in Cocoa Beach, Florida

Studies have revealed people's book buying habits are influenced by various factors. Authors need to consider the investment of time and money when marketing to potential buyers. The trend has moved from “writing” your book, to “publishing” your book, to “discovery” of your book. The focus now is how to draw readers to your work.

The top six reasons individuals make a book purchase, in order of importance, are:

1.  Author Reputation
  • An author who writes in an area of interest to you (psychological thrillers, romance, westerns, horror, fantasy, etc.)
  • An author who writes well, can move you emotionally or lead you to gain insight
  • An author who delivers on the promise to educate or entertain


2.  Personal Recommendations
  • Friends, family members, co-workers tell you about a book they really enjoyed or a book they think you will like
  • Discussions about books, book clubs, library picks, best seller lists

3.  Price
  • Fewer pages, lower price
  • Sale price always attracts consumers
  • Buy one, get one free or at a reduced price
  • Bonus packages combine book(s) with another itme (perfume/hand cream/book mark)
  • FREE book with purchase of another non book item
  • FREE for the asking, donations to community service events or non-profits


4.  Book Reviews
  • Included in book forward or on the back cover
  • Online by publishers, agents, or readers
  • Newspapers, magazines, book review print or online venues


5.  Cover/Blurb
  • Attractive cover, title and subtitle. or with a blurb about book
  • Back cover summary, blurb, reviews
  • Reviews inside book forward or in the end pages


6.  Advertisements print and online
  • Media blast by authors, publishers, agents, etc.
  • On line Emails, Twitter, Facebook, and other social media
  • Paid ads in newspapers, magazines, book venu magazines/brochures/fliers 

About Today’s Guest Blogger

Valerie Allen is a psychologist, author, and speaker. She is a popular presenter at writer conferences and workshops for new and experienced authors. Her presentations focus on writing, publishing, and marketing, using her book, Write, Publish, Sell! Quick, Easy, Inexpensive Ideas for the Marketing Challenge, Second  Edition.

She is a member of the Space Coast Writers' Guild, the National League of American PEN Women, Cape Canaveral Branch, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Creative Arts Foundation of Brevard, FL. She is also a cofounder of Authors For Authors.

Authors For Authors supports and encourages writers, providing venues for book talks, book launches, and two book fairs a year. The Brevard Authorss Book Fair will be held on March 28, 2015 at the Cocoa Beach Library, Cocoa Beach, FL. Non-local authors can take advantage of this promotional opportunity to have their books and materials on display all day at the book fair. More information can be found at AuthorsForAuthors.com.

Valerie's published books include novels: Suffer the Little Children, Sins of the Father, and Amazing Grace. Forthcoming is her next novel, The Prodigal Son. Recently, she published, 'Tis Herself: Short Story Collection. She has published two books for children grades three to five: Summer School for Smarties and Bad Hair, Good Hat, New Friends. Her most recent nonfiction book is, Beyond the Inkblots: Confusion to Harmony, which is used in her presentations about motivation and the psychology of everyday living.

To have your book displayed at this year’s fair (frugally!) , reach her at VAllenWriter@cs.com. Learn more about her at www.ValerieAllenWriter.com .
Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of This Is the Place; Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered; Tracings, a chapbook of poetry; and how to books for writers including the award-winning second edition of, The Frugal Book Promoter: How to get nearly free publicity on your own or by partnering with your publisher; The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success; and Great Little Last Minute Editing Tips for Writers . The Great First Impression Book Proposal is her newest booklet for writers. She has three FRUGAL books for retailers including A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques. Some of her other blogs are TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com, a blog where authors can recycle their favorite reviews. She also blogs at all things editing, grammar, formatting and more at The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor .


  1. Great advice. Thank you.

  2. J.Q., thank you for coming by. I admire Valerie Allen for all she does for authors!

  3. Which means you have to cover all of those things to a degree.

  4. i agree, Diane. It's a matter of balance, but without marketing, books will and do curl up and die! (-:


Thank you for commenting at Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites pick
www.SharingWithWriters.blogspot.com. You might also find www.TheFrugalEditor.blogspot.com full of resources you can use and
www.TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com, a blog you can use to benefit your book or reading pleasure.