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A Question for You: Why Do Authors and Publishers — 28 Comments

  1. Hi Lyn,

    First of all, I am a book blogger but mostly I'm just an avid reader. I do it because I love to help spread the word about great books. I get some for review but I also buy books too, and I sometimes enter to win them.

    1. It definitely helps to get the word out. Many times I have learned about a book from a giveaway and when I didn't win, I end up buying the book.

    2. Yes, I have won books.

    3. I read a LOT and have tons of books that I pass along to friends and family.

    4. No. I visit a lot of blogs that do book reviews & giveaways, but not just for the giveaways.

    5. I like to know what's new out there. There are SO many great Christian fiction books out there these days that I can't keep up. So I follow a lot of blogs: some are authors and some are just readers and reviewers.

    6. http://wordvessel.blogspot.com/
    http://buuklvr81.blogspot.com/
    http://enjoyingthewritingcraft.blogspot.com/
    http://roseannamwhite.blogspot.com/

    7. yes
    http://michellevsblog.blogspot.com/

  2. Thank you all for your comments. I will be studying them and will blog about this sometime in September!

  3. Hello Lyn. I am pleased to visit your blog from Love Inspired's Blog. Here are my answers:

    #1 I think authors and publishers giveaway books for publicity buzz, name recognition and branding.

    #2 Yes – actually I have won many books.

    #3 Since I started my blog (a year ago) I highlight the books on my blog and when I read them I post a review often giving the book away.

    #4 When I first started at blogs it was mostly to win (2008). But not since starting my own blog.

    #5 Now I visit many to see specific reviews. I do not visit as often as I would like.

    #6 Yes I follow some on your list: P&P, 4 the Love of Books.

    I visit too many to list but here are some:
    The Sweetest Romance Authors:
    http://thesweetestromanceauthors.blogspot.com/
    Riding With the Top Down:
    http://ridingwiththetopdown.blogspot.com/
    Cym Lowell – esp Book Review Wednesday Party:
    http://cymlowell.blogspot.com/
    The Long and Short Reviews:
    http://www.longandshortreviews.com/

    #7 My Blog (where I do a lot of book giveaways) is Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf at http://marthasbookshelf.blogspot.com/

  4. Love these kinds of questions!

    1) Word of mouth, tweet, facebook, goodreads, amazon and B&N! Or maybe they just want to reclaim their floor space, shelf space, table space ๐Ÿ˜‰

    2) Have won several.

    3) I read them of course and review most because I like spreading the word. That is how I find good books and want to return the favor. Some I have won are duplicates of ones I bought and those go to the library. Others find their way on my keeper shelf. I find it very hard to share books that are autographed but others I will loan.

    4)and 5) I visit blogs for a variety of reasons, not simply book giveaways. They have to keep me coming back with interesting posts and engaging dialogue. I have missed knowing I have won books because that was all the blog did, giveaways. Giveaways are nice but not the whole enchilada. I love authors when they blog about the backstory for their book or challenges they have faced because writing is more about romance. I read blogs for inspiration as much as anything.
    6) I love petticoatsandpistols.com for the wonderful view of the west and its history, writing western romance, and the giveaways. I also love seekerville.blogspot.com for its advice to writers. And of course, Craftie Ladies. My daughter, daughterinlaw and quite a few friends have blogs I love.

    6) My blog is "confessions of a backyard hermit" which I restarted after a sabbatical. I have always been told that I have a different way of looking at life and the blog puts those thoughts down. It is as much a devotional as it is just my view of my experiences.
    I am probably going to start posting some of my romance reviews there as well. I discovered that many women in ministry or post career are big romance readers like I am…did I know? Not until I bravely admitted that I did! http://wwwbackyardhermit.blogspot.com/

    Thanks so much for asking these questions. I have a few new blogs to check out!

    Peace, Julie

  5. Hello Lyn,

    1) Publicity would be the main purpose for book giveaways.
    2)No, I have not won a book but then again, I have not entered that many giveaways.
    3)Since I have not won, I cannot say. Chances are that I will place it in my library of favorite books. That's after I let mom read it. I hope to write a book review of it as well.
    4) I do not visit blogs because of the giveaways.
    5) I have two folders in my bookmarks that I put blog pages into. One I check weekly to see what they post and the other I try to check daily. The reason for checking them varies. I suppose I do it because I gain knowledge that I can use in various ways. When someone talks about an event, it can trigger a memory or thought that I might be able to use in my own writing.
    6. As for some sites I like to visit, here are a few.
    http://bookendslitagency.blogspot.com/ This blog usually has great insights on the industry from an agent's POV.
    http://craftieladiesofromance.blogspot.com/ This one has great posts from a group of published authors. Their occasional stories are great as well.
    Since I just found your blog, I have not had the chance to check out those you have listed. I came to your blog through the Craftie Ladies blog.
    7) Yes, I do have a blog in which I try to post three times a week: Sun, Wed, and Fri. On Wednesdays, I try to cover a topic about writing. The address is
    http://blog.clark-stone.net

    Dennis Clarkston
    AKA Clark Stone

    P.S. – Reading through the comments on this page has given me more blogs to check out.

  6. Hi Pamela!!

    Lol Lyn…I'm hoping it will be good. I applied for my work study today!
    Talk to you soon,
    Hannah

  7. #1 – I do think a lot of times it's for publicity – but some authors really see their writing as a ministry and give away their books as a way to try and get the message out to more people. Lots of them give their books out in more than just blogs – to soldiers overseas, church libraries, hospitals, shelters, and that kind of thing.

    #2. I have won a book on a blog.

    #3. I have won more than one (and some were books from publishers) but I keep some that touched me especially. Others I may pass on in a contest of my own, donate to a library, give to friend, put in the church library… that kind of thing. I also buy books and do the same kinds of things with them.

    #4. No, I visit different kinds of blogs – mostly writing and reviewing blogs.

    #5. I enjoy blogs where the person shares their personality and is kind – plus (if they review books) I like if they don't give away too much of the book in their review.

    #6. I follow something like 40 blogs – but many of my favorites have already been listed. Renee @ Black & Gold Girl's Spot, Camy's Loft, Seekerville, Craftie Ladies of Suspense, Hannah of Project Journal, Lena Nelson Dooley's Blog, and Writer's Alley.

    I'd have to add WORDplay

    The Cross & Cutlass

    and

    Edgy Inspirational Author Blog

    And that's trying to keep the list to a bare minimum. :o)

    #7. I do have a blog. Right now it is very casual and about book reviews. I am working on my first manuscript and hope to have news about my writing on it as soon as I hit that part of my career when there is something worthwhile to share. lol
    Butterfly Blessings

  8. 1- A Question for You: Why Do Authors and Publishers giveaway books on blogs?

    To generate an interest in the book and it is a cheaper form of advertising that actually works!

    2-Have you won a book on a blog?

    Yes – an autographed copy of mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine and Cook Italy by Katie Caldesi

    3-If you did, what did you do with that book?

    Read them both and they are still on my bookshelf.

    4-Do you only visit blogs that give books away regularly?

    No. I visit all types of blogs as long as they cover things that interest me.

    5-Or are there some blogs you visit or read often? If so, why?

    Yes, the interesting ones because they cover topics that I really want to keep up with.

    6-Please list any blogs you especially enjoy and visit often. Please give their URL or Web address so others may enjoy them. Have you ever visited any of the blogs I post in the right column?

    There are way too many to list. I've visited most of the ones that you posted in the right column.

    7- Do you have a blog? If so, what is it about and please include your URL.

    No I don't have one that I post to on a regular basis.

    forsurveysonly at gmail dot com

  9. I think giving away books does help with publicity and promotion.

    Yes, I've won several books on blogs.

    I read one, started a couple and didn't really care for them. Most of them are in my TBR pile. I'm too busy writing to read as much as I'd like, but eventually I'll get to them.

    I don't visit blogs just for books. I have too many as is. Although, I have done that a time or two if the book was something I really wanted to read. I visit blogs for fun and information, and to support friends.

    Yes. I read several but not everyday.

    I love mysteriesandMargaritas.blogspot, a great blog for both learning and fun; casablancaauthors.blogspot, my publisher's romance authors group blog; celticqueens.blogspot.com; http://blogs.publishersweekly.com/blogs/beyondherbook/
    oh, there are too many to mention them all.

    I haven't visited any of the ones you have listed, but they do look interesting.

    I just joined a group blog, casablancaauthors.blogspot.com. Other than that, I only guest blog. I fear blogging. I'm afraid it will drain all my time, and I'm already a poor manager of that ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Good questions:

    1) I agree for publicity and also to grow numbers on a blog.

    2) Yes, I have won many books on blogs.

    3) I keep my signed books usually. The others I like to share with a friend who will enjoy it or give it away on my blog.

    4) I definitely don't visit just for giveaways. Sometimes I get irritated when people have the stipulation that you must become a follower on their blog to enter. I know everyone wants to build their blog, but I would rather people "follow" my blog because they like what I have to say instead of just because it was a condition of a contest.

    5) I agree that blogging is about relationships. When I am entering a giveaway I try to note an actual reason why I am interested in reading the book.

    6) I have lots of favorites. I really like Amber, Relz Reviews, Seekerville, Writers Alley, Laura Frantz, Bluerose, etc. I agree that Kav's blog is an underappreciated blog with wonderful reviews!!

    7)Yes, my blog is located at http://www.darkglassponderings.blogspot.com/

  11. Hi Lyn,
    1. I believe giving away books on blogs is part of the author's marketing and promotion of their book.
    2. Yes, I have won a book on a blog.
    3. I read the book & pass it on. Or if it touches me deeply it becomes a 'keeper'.
    4. I visit blogs about books, about cooking and a lot of author blogs.
    5. Several blogs I visit regularly because of the content. I like to learn new things. If a book is given away that is always a plus.
    6. Petticoats & Pistols is a web page I thoroughly love because they 'teach' about the old west. It is http://petticoatandpistols.com
    There are quite a few more that I visit too. Yours is one of them. I keep my favorites on my favorite list.
    7. I have a blog but I don't always have a chance to post. It is more of a place for me to just speak what's on my mind at the time. Would hope to start a book blog sometime in the future. My blog is at http://cindywoolard.blogspot.com

    Have a blessed day!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

    countrybear52[at]yahoo[dot]com

  12. 1. I agree with everyone that giveaways are for publicity. I've learned about new authors and books that I might not have heard about otherwise.

    2.I've really been blessed to win several books on blogs.

    3. If I win a book, I treat it like its a review book. I always read them and then post a review on my blog, and if I really like it on other sites. They also get lended out to family. ๐Ÿ™‚

    4. I have several blogs that I love and I would still visit them everyday without giveaways.
    5. The ones I love are very inspirational and/or have lots of great book ideas.

    6. I have several of my favorites listed in my sidebar, but Hannah from Project Journal has several of them listed in her comment.
    I definitely recommend Amber @ Season's of Humilty. She's going places!!!!!

    7. My blog is called Bluerose's Heart. (http://www.bluerosesheart.blogspot.com)
    I got so discouraged with the books i was reading, so I started my blog to give parents and kids clean ideas for books. I mainly review Christian books now, but I still try to throw in some other ideas occasionally. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I just found this blog when i was searching for Shelter of Hope, so i will be keeping up with it now. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. It is the publicity, and I love winning books, but the truth is I have learned so much from the blogs, and they are well worth reading and enjoying the authors musings and the book reviews are awesome.

  14. Lyn so sorry about the extra posts it said it wasn't posting but it was im sorry about that.

  15. Hi Lyn Im not an author but thought I would try answering the questions from a readers perspective

    1 Why do Authors and Publishers give away books?
    to create interest in books and in the hope the ones who dont win are so excited about the books they will then go out and buy the book and that the winners will post a review to also create more hype.

    2-Have you won a book on a blog?
    Yes have won a few most from an aussie blog but have won from other blogs as well and its a great feeling.

    3-If you did, what did you do with that book? The ones that are signed to me I have kept but often have shared them. Others are or will end up in the Church library or if its a must keep in my library to share. I also normally will post a review on my blog and other places.

    4-Do you only visit blogs that give books away regularly? No I dont visit as many blogs as I use to but quite a few I visit do have giveaways I can not enter but I often visit just because I enjoy the blog and reading whats been written. I often read but dont always post.

    5-Or are there some blogs you visit or read often? If so, why?
    There are some I visit more than others one is an aussie blog and she has weekly features and also some contests and was the very first blog I saw, one is the Seekers cos again it was one of the first blogs I ever visited also. There are others also Like Lena Dooley's I sometimes enter sometimes just read the interview and sometimes post with a dont enter me comment. I also have several others I visit regularly

    6-Please list any blogs you especially enjoy and visit often. Please give their URL or Web address so others may enjoy them. Have you ever visited any of the blogs I post in the right column?
    http://seekerville.blogspot.com
    http://relzreviewz.blogspot.com
    http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com/
    http://www.craftieladiesofromance.blogspot.com/
    http://scrollsquirrel.blogspot.com/
    There are others I visit alot also
    I often will follow a blog tour sometimes in hopes of winning a book and other times to support an author. Recently I visited several blogs featuring Susan Page Davis both books she was promoting I had on order or were waiting to arrive.

    7- Do you have a blog? If so, what is it about and please include your URL.
    yes my blog is at http://ausjenny.blogspot.com

    This was so cool to answer just like class work only way more fun!

  16. I am sure, like everyone else, that giving away books is great PR. I would just be happy to win, so I am glad they give away books.

    2-Have you won a book on a blog? No
    3-If you did, what did you do with that book?n/a

    4-Do you only visit blogs that give books away regularly?No, I like to read all types of blogs. It is interesting to see what other people are thinking.

    5-Or are there some blogs you visit or read often? not really. I just skim through whatever pops up in my rss feed.

    7- Do you have a blog? If so, what is it about and please include your URL. No. I have considered writing a blog, but going back to school keeps me plenty busy.

  17. 1) Exposure/promotion/publicity

    2) Yes, numerous times

    3) More often than not I pass them along to friends or family after I read them

    4-5) No, I visit most blogs because they are lovers of CF like me, or sometimes a post someone else shares appeals to me and I'll visit a blog to read it.

    6) These first two blogs are from friends I knew even before they blogged…I met both of these gals back on Tyndale's old Heartquest message board years ago.

    So Many Books
    Relz Reviewz

    Others I drop by on a fairly regular basis:

    Books, Movies, and Chinese Food
    Book Splurge
    A Peek at My Bookshelf

    I have visited the Craftie Ladies of Romance, Steeple Hill Love Inspired Authors, and Mocha with Linda blogs on occasion.

    7) I do have a blog, My Buckling Bookshelf, where I do review a few books, highlight upcoming books from time to time, and I have been known to give books away once in a while. I'm not as consistent with it as I could be, but it's kind of a side interest.

    **Your website looks good…makes me wish for another trip to Wisconsin, though. I visited there once more than 20 years ago. It was during the springtime and it was gorgeous…so lush and green…*sigh*

    PS: Thanks for a chance at the drawing. ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. 1. it's the publicity
    2.Have you won a book on a blog? yes
    3-If you did, what did you do with that book?I read it and past it on to a friend.
    4-Do you only visit blogs that give books away regularly? No
    5-Or are there some blogs you visit or read often? Yes If so, why. If my favorite authors have blogs I read them.
    6-Please list any blogs you especially enjoy and visit often. Please give their URL or Web address so others may enjoy them.
    debbie macomber.com
    Jill Shalvis
    Gail Gaymer Martin http://writingright-martin.blogspot.com
    /http://forensicsandfaith.blogspot.com
    and a lot of the love inspired authors
    Have you ever visited any of the blogs I post in the right column?yes
    7- Do you have a blog?No If so, what is it about and please include your URL.

  19. 1) I think they give away books for stats (to see how many people respond) and it draws more people in.
    2) No I have not on a book
    3) I pass books on to friends – keep them going.
    4)5) I do not visit give away blogs, however, I have my faves that I regularly read and sometimes they do give aways
    6) yes, I do visit blogs off blogs – if that blog is interesting so are the followers – as a rule
    7) Yes, I have a blog. I am a childrens book writer and a doll maker. http://jkwart.blogspot.com
    Blessings, Janet

  20. 1. You give away books for exposure to it. I have purchased books that I see on blog, and they have always been good. 2.Yes, I have won a book on blog, 3 and I read it for sure, and loved it.
    . No, I visit blogs to get acquainted with authors. 5. Yes, besides Lyn Cote's blog, Margaret Daley, I visit Jillian Hart, Jennifer Taylor Hudson, Irene Hannon, Marta Perry, Linda Goodnight, Janet Tronstad, Gail Gaymer Martin, Tricia Goyer, etc., they don't all give away books. 6. I visit these weekly, and enjoy checking out new books, etc., and reading what they share. I also put them on my facebook when I see the share button, hoping this helps. 7. No I don't have a blog yet. I am interested in writing, but after reading the books of these authors, I think, no way could I think up that good of a story. Thanks to all of you.

  21. 1. I agree, it's the publicity.
    2. Yes, I have won a few books. One was given away and mailed to me by the author, but done through a book review blog. Another was through an author's blog, but it wasn't one of her books.
    3. Read them, of course!
    4. No, I visit blogs of authors I like to read, and blogs of Christian book reviewers.
    5 & 6 I subscribe to and read alot of blogs. If my favorite authors have blogs, I try to read them. Laura Frantz does a beautiful blog, she writes it so well and is so friendly. http://laurafrantz.blogspot.com/
    I like to read Brandilyn Collins' blog because 1) I read everything she writes and 2) she keeps us updated on things in the book industry such as ebooks and ebook readers, iPads, etc. http://forensicsandfaith.blogspot.com/
    Probably my favorite book review blog is Michelle from http://michellevsblog.blogspot.com/ Like me, she's not a writer, just an avid reader, and she doesn't like to know too much about the book before she reads it (and I don't either) so she won't give away too much in her reviews. I rarely read the back of a book because often, too much of the plot is given away. Generally, if Michelle likes a book, I know I will too. I depend on my blogs to hear about books as they come out. My list of must reads gets longer and longer. I couldn't begin to list all the great blogs out there because I would take up all this space listing them.
    7. No, I don't have a blog. I'm a terrible writer.

    Winning a book is fun but it's certainly not the only reason to subscribe to a blog. It's just the icing.

    Hope this helps.

    Thank you for your blog.

  22. Tracy and Pamela,
    Thanks for sharing! I'm going to try to visit all the blogs mentioned here.
    I'm on 2 group blogs and have my own. I was hesitant to start a blog until I decided what it would be about. That took me a while.

  23. Hi Lyn,
    I do follow your blog as it pops up on Facebook, but this is my first comment here.
    I follow Seekerville's blog daily (hi Hannah!), Footnotes from history, petitfours and hot tamales (members from my local RWA chapter), Publisher's Weekly, and then some homemaking sites: Southern Savers and Southern Plate.
    When I go to my gmail account and reader, there's also a blog called Writing while the rice boils that I like, and a personal friend's blog, SuperWriterMom. The reader is really easy…must do that more often.
    Anyway, I don't have a blog of my own because it appears the blogsphere is supersaturated, and single person's blogs must be more demanding than group blogs. I know to be published it's imperative to establish a presence and a brand, so I better get busy.
    Last summer I spent waaay toooo much time on eHarlequin's site, with all their author blogs, and yep, I won several books, along with some other goodies. Chocolates, candles, books from the author signing at RWA…. It was quite a fun summer; something in the mailbox every week. But now I'm buckling down. Haven't been there in about a year now, and I look for industry news, crafting lessons on writing, and funny stuff from people I know. I don't read a blog to win books, I read blogs for education and encouragement and camaraderie.
    The economy's pitfall and blessing is that those of us who have abandoned our job searches and opted to tighten our belts and make the most of what we have, are all at home and in coffeeshops, looking for company, whether to share in the misery or to make the best of it.
    I choose to make the best of it.
    So I read the best of the best.
    And I Tweet and Facebook too.

  24. To answer question 1, promotion is the name of the game, isn't it? I've given away a number of books myself, and it is definitely one way to get people reading (and hopefully reviewing etc.) yur book. However, I do not visit blogs simply because of give aways. I have won a book once – NO OTHER by Shawna Williams, and I read it and thouroughly enjoyed it. As for blogs I follow, there are just WAY to many for me to list. I'll give you three of my favorites – these are blogs that I actually look forward to and read each and every post:
    http://www.fictionmirrorstruth.blogspot.com
    http://www.pimpmynovel.blogspot.com
    http://www.hawadaere.blogspot.com

    Good day Lyn!

  25. Great replies, Hannah! You seem very mature for your age. College will be challenging and FUN. I think those were my most carefree days! Study and then ENJOY!

  26. Hey Lyn!
    I know I don't post on here as often as I should, but I've been pretty MIA recently anyway. Note: though I may not respond, I'm definitely reading and it's always good stuff on here! Getting ready for freshman year of college is time-consuming and stressful! LOL! But I figured this is a really good post to respond to.

    1) I think they give away books one) for publicity, let's be honest. Giving away free books is an easy way to catch new readers and keep old followers! Two) Along the same lines, it keeps people interested in your blog a lot of times I think. Three) I think it shows a lot about your character. Lol! I know that's not necessarily true or anything, but I personally think that it's really nice to do the giveaways! There's a couple answers : )

    2) Yes, I have won a book on a blog.

    3) Well, unfortunately, I did not claim a couple that I won on one blog and now it's gone "out of business". I won the last LI giveaway and Camy is going to wait to ship them to me until I get to school. It'll kind of be like a….welcoming gift in a way! LOL! I also won Mae Nunn's website contest (not quite a blog). I read all the books I got with it (including one of yours!) and then actually let friends borrow them to read 'em because they were just that good ; )

    4) No, I definitely do not just visit blogs with giveaways.

    5) To me, it's definitely not just about the giveaways. I mean, they're nice, but blogging has become much more about the people I've met than I ever thought it could become.

    6) Oh, there are waaaaaay too many, Lyn! LOL! Someone that you may recognize, not sure (?), is Kav (http://bestreads-kav.blogspot.com/). Her blog is great with lots of book reviews! Renee's blog is always full of fun and new things (http://steelergirl83.blogspot.com/). Krista has now dedicated her blog to her very sick new little baby daughter, Annabelle. She just had her one month birthday, which is a miracle in itself (http://reflectionsbykrista.blogspot.com/). After seeing Wicked the Musical three times in the one week we were in London (twice in front row!!!), I have found the ultimate Rachel Tucker Blog (she plays Elphaba, not sure how much you know about Wicked) (http://racheltucker01.blogspot.com/). Amber's blog is great (http://seasonsofhumility.blogspot.com/)! And of course there's Seekerville and the Craftie Ladies of Romance and Suspense! My days are chocked full of important people now!! LOL!

    Yes, sometimes I do visit the blogs off of your blog! They're rather good : )

    7) Yes, I have a blog. It was about my high school honors project, but now it's turned into basically my blog on my life, since I've graduated now. I talk a lot about the stresses and joy of this 18-year-olds life, including college, medical issues, and traveling! I also talk about books, movies, and music a lot because I like those things!! You can find me at hcprojectjournal.blogspot.com

    Oh man, THAT was really long! Sorry bout that, but you asked a lot of questions : P Hope I answered okay…..

    Talk to you soon!!
    Hannah

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