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Friday, September 16, 2011

What the heck is a Blog Tour?

As a soon to be published author (8 days and counting), I've been wading through the mire and muck of marketing and promoting. I've researched, talked with industry professionals and read everything I can about all the avenues to "selling" a book. The common thread I keep coming across is "exposure".

Being a little resistant to the idea of "exposing" myself, I'm leary about how to go about this. I am on Twitter, Facebook (yes, you can go ahead and "like" me now under my PJ Sharon Author Fan page, and I'm blogging. This brings me to my topic for today. When I announce to my friends and family that I will be doing a "blog tour", I get a funny look and a "huh"?

So let me explain. Over the next few weeks, I'll be a guest on several blogs. As of now, they are fellow writer's blogs. I do plan to search out blogs that will lead me to my target audience, who are teens and young adults, but for now, my focus is on getting the word out that I am publishing my debut contemporary YA romance, Heaven is for Heroes, on September 24th, a book I think will appeal to adult readers as well. I know you are all probably tired of my shameless self-promotion, but on the outside chance that someone new is reading my blog, I'm obligated to inform them of this wonderful news.

So a blog tour is essentially the e-published author's schedule of appearances--taking over the traditional book signing tour. Thanks to the internet, we now have the ability to reach countless readers and focused groups rather than hanging out at the mall where maybe twenty people will stop by to peruse your wares (which I'll also be doing in October).

My upcoming blog appearances are scheduled as follows:

Tues. Sept. 20th, I'll be on Jennifer Fusco's MOD (Market or Die) site talking about my marketing and promotions experience since deciding to indie-publish.

Fri. September 23rd, I'm doing an author interview at Jo Ramseys site followed by an interview with my main character, Jordie Dunn, on Tuesday, Sept. 27th--also with Jo. I'm especially excited about that, since it takes the focus off me and you get to meet one of the coolest seventeen year-olds around.

Kourtney Heintz has offered to re-run a guest post I did a few weeks ago. I'll be talking about my writer's journey on her blog on Sunday, Sept. 25th.

And last but not least, NYT and USA Today best selling author, Kristan Higgins of the Jaunty Quills, has been kind enough to allow me to drop by on Thurs.Sept. 29th. This post is all about the book. What inspired the story, why I wrote it, and why readers will hopefully love it as much as I do.

I hope you'll stop by and visit, leave a comment, take your chances to win a free e-book copy of Heaven is for Heroes, and enjoy the ride along with me. I'm sure I''l be planning more appearances, but this is a great start and I'm so thankful for the opportunities that these great ladies have provided. I couldn't do this without them-or you. See you there!

Any ideas for future blog tour locations? I'm looking for YA sites. Thanks!

8 comments:

  1. I do a blog tour for my wolf series for each month, sometimes daily, sometimes more. It's a great way to find new audiences. When I first began, I was more "professional." But then I began to write like I am and how I write and it became a lot more fun!

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  2. Have you contacted Tiffany A. White? I know she writes YA (but is not yet pubbed). On twitter, she's @Tiffany_A_White. Her blog address is:

    http://tiffanyawhite.wordpress.com/

    She's got a pretty good following and is good at promoting her blogs.

    What about Kait Nolan? She's pubbed in both YA and adult Urban Fantasy. She has a big following as well as a fan base. On twitter, she's @kaitnolan. Her blog address is:

    www.kaitnolan.com

    Best of luck to you. Oh, and by the way, I think blog tours are as effective if not more effective than sitting in a bookstore and connecting with (if you're lucky) twenty people. :D

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  3. (hmmmm...second try here...appologies if it is a repeat...)

    Newbie question...is a Blog Tour the same thing as a Blog Hop? I've heard both terms and now, thanks to your informative post I understand one of them.

    Best of luck to you PJ!

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  4. Yay! Sounds like a great groups of sites. Good luck with the tour.

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  5. Great post and I wish you the best of luck on your blog tour. I'm going to have to start my research on this myself before my e-book is published so maybe I'll ask you some questions down the road? I bet you're so excited about your upcoming release! Wow! The day is nearing.
    Patti

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  6. Thanks for the references Catie. I'll definitely check them out.

    Jayne , I haven't heard the term "blog hop",but I bet its the same thing.

    Thanks Casey, and I'm always here Patti. Ask away!

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  7. A couple of my friends started a YA-focused blog with some other writers - I don't know if they do guest spots, but might be worth checking into: http://honestlyya.blogspot.com/

    Good luck with the tour!

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  8. Hmm, a blog tour is another interesting avenue. Good to know. Thanks for sharing and good luck, PJ :)

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