Tuesday, December 12, 2006

A Virtual Book Tour Primer, Part 1

The virtual book tour for Infinite Space, Infinite God is going very well. I'm scheduled at seven different sites, and am working on a few more. Check out the schedule at http://isigsf.tripod.com. From there, you can follow the links to see my interviews.

I've had several people ask me how I arranged this tour. It was actually very easy, and I'll take you step by step over my next few posts.

What is a virtual book tour? Like a regular book tour, you go around talking about your book, yourself, and your writing. The ultimate goal, of course, is to generate sales, but mostly, you're creating a buzz in hopes that people who might otherwise never learn about your work have a chance to "discover" you. The beauty of a virtual book tour is it's on the Internet: no expense, no leaving home and most of it can be done at your leisure.

There are several ways to conduct a virtual tour appearance. The simplest is the book review--your host reads the book and reviews it on his site, or you write your own review for him. The next is the interview--again, your host can e-mail you questions you answer, or you can write your own interview for her to post. Then there's the guest chat--if your host has a chat room, you can talk to the audience. (Have a general topic in mind and a brief, prepared intro about yourself and your book.) Your host could have a contest for a copy of your book or hold a "reading" where you post a chapter or scene from your book. Use your imagination and ask your host--he or she may have a different idea.

Of course, you'll want to talk about your book, but don't limit yourself to that. Think about the things that affect your readers. For example, Infinite Space, Infinite God is Catholic SF; so at first glance, I should target blogs about Catholicism and science fiction. However, I tried to make this more than just a fun read; I wanted folks to use this book to discuss and learn. So I might reach high schoolers, homeschoolers, other writers, maybe even theology/philosophy-and-technology sites. I'm a writer working with a small press, so I can reach those people by talking about the experiences that led to the publishing of ISIG--and writers are terrific readers! I'm a busy mom, so I can talk about writing and raising kids--moms read or they may be looking for something for their SF-loving husbands.

Saturday, I'll post the steps I took to put together the book tour. See ya then!

If you have any specific questions, please drop a comment or contact me through my contact page and I'll answer it on a post.

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