Saturday, April 21, 2007

Online Bookshelves
Offer Captive Audience

Readers are everywhere, but finding an avenue to reach this diverse group has always been a huge challenge for authors trying to market their books.
Author websites are a good outlet, as are web 2.0 sites such as MySpace and Facebook, but it's still difficult to pull people to sites unless they’re already looking for them. New social networking sites geared toward book lovers may help authors find a captive audience. Among the new sites are Shelfari, LibraryThing, BooksWellRead, MediaChest and Shelfcentered.
Shelfari recently landed a $1 million investment from Amazon.com.
Founded by former RealNetworks employees Josh Hug and Kevin Beukelman, Shelfari allows people to list book titles, write reviews, recommend books to friends and find like-minded bibliophiles. Check out this story from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer when the site launched.
LibraryThing is an online service to help people catalog their books easily. Because everyone catalogs together, LibraryThing also connects people with the same books, comes up with suggestions for what to read next, and so forth.
You can check out the PubGuy’s bookshelf on Shelfari here: http://www.shelfari.com/PubGuy. You can add a widget to your blog to display your bookshelf. Scroll down the right side of the page for an example.
I’ve started a POD group on Shelfari, so come check it out and offer up your opinions.

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Several former iUniverse authors have traditionally-published books hitting the shelves soon. Jennifer Colt’s third book featuring the McAfee twins, The Vampire of Venice Beach (Broadway), actually came out a few weeks back.
Brian Wiprud’s Tailed is due out May 29 and is available for pre-order at Amazon. Laurie Notaro’s There’s a (Slight) Chance I Might Be Going to Hell drops the same day. Notaro is stretching out a bit. The new book is a novel, while her first five books were collections of columns and essays.

1 Comments:

Blogger Emily Veinglory said...

I prefer LibraryThing because of the number of my fellow authors already using it. Shelfari may overtake it now they have the bucks by the users there seem to skew young.

April 23, 2007 at 8:05 AM  

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