Thursday, November 14, 2013

Who Reads Your Books?

I must admit I was shocked when I found out how many close friends and family members, most of whom are readers, haven't read my book. I'm not saying all, a few have, but many that I thought for sure would have by now haven't. Want to know why? My friends and family are not my audience. From talking to other authors I've come to the conclusion that either your friends and family aren't your audience, or they are your only audience. 

Yes, some close friends and a few family members have responded to me about Twist after reading it. Still, most of the people interacting with me about it are friends online and people in my writing community. I've had so so many offers online to do a review through my sample. I still have yet to trade 'free copies' for 'honest reviews' because I'm technologically challenged and can't figure out how to send a 'mobi'. WTF is a 'mobi'?

When I look at it from my friend's and family's perspective I get it. It's hard to lose yourself in fiction and achieve that suspension of disbelief when you know the author personally. I write in the first person and have a hyper active voice. It's clearly my voice... and it probably scares them. 

Inversely, there are friends of family members and acquaintances that have heard the legends of my craziness and buy my book for that exact reason.

Think about it. You are asking people to commit six to eight hours of their life to reading your book. I was listening to one of my favorite authors being interviewed online. They stated that the biggest mistake first time authors make is focusing on marketing their first book. Woops! The trick is to keep writing books, better books, then repeat. I think of my current royalties times four and I get it. 

Patience is another annoying virtue she suggests. Give your audience a chance to find you. -meh-

Me: I just published a book. Here's my card.

Bartender: Congratulations! What can I get you?

Me: A job.


  1. Neat post:) I find that this is true for many authors, and the people most likely to read your book are people who already read the same books you consider your own favorites:)

  2. I'm glad many others are with me. Thanks Mark! Glad you stopped by.

  3. I "followed" your blog!
    Will you consider returning the favor???
    Twitter: @DPalmerAuthor

  4. For a long time my family and friends were the first to read my stuff. Now they only get to read it after it's been through the hands of five or so fellow writers. And then my siblings tell me that my writing is improving. I sense a correlation there. :)

  5. Yes. The more eyes scanning over your work the better. Agreed. It takes a village. I'm coming up to the finish line for 'Chosen' and I have four Beta readers lined up. ;) I feel that my writing is improving and I am looking forward to feedback from others.

  6. Are you missing the obvious here; how can you know who's read it? You can only know who's commented on it and possibly who's purchased it (Idk if you get a list?). I'm thinking, some of your relatives dont have access to ebooks (or refuse the technology), some think u ought to give it to them (clearly not understanding ure trying to make a LIVING writing), some may just not have gotten around to ordering it yet, and others just dont write reviews. do know?

    1. I know because I'll ask said friend or family memeber and they'll answer, I haven't gotten around to it, or, "I plan to after I finish the current book I'm reading." I also know that many, such as yourself, have read it.

      My point was simply that authors get so excited to have a book out that we almost expect people to stop everything and read it which is silly. This post wasn't a complaint. I'm glad my f&f aren't my only audience! I feel very lucky.