Fear in Writing: Shelfari and Selling Books

Today in Literary History

Today in Literary History...December 14, 1907: Rudyard Kipling receives the Nobel prize for literature, the first English-language writer to do so.ud

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Shelfari and Selling Books

Have you considered the importance of Goodreads and Shelfari?

It didn't really occur to me until today, when I signed on to find THREE questions from a fellow reader.  She wanted to know what I thought about FOUR different authors!  And my bookcase showcases 423 different books--most of which I have read, some of which I intend to read.

Here is the exchange between my Shelfari friend and I...

Shelfari Friend-Question1: What are Timothy Hallinan novels like??? Is he very suspenseful???

SF-Q2: I just noted that u responded about if I should read the Christopher FOwler book???? Have u read all his books??

SF-Q3: Hello, what did u think of Bangkok 8 by John Burdett and Private Patient by PD James???

ME: Ok, one at a time :)
Timothy Hallinan. I've only read one, but I was REALLY impressed with the writing style. He gets into his characters and yes, they are suspenseful, but not the same way an American novel is. Definitely Thai. I like them BETTER than John Burdett!

Christopher Fowler. I have only read Ten Second Staircase and probably won't rush to read more. I thoroughly enjoyed the plot and the facts about England and British crime in the book, but wasn't wrapped up in the characters.

I loved Bangkok 8, but wasn't as impressed with Bangkok Haunts (the second in the series) by John Burdett.

I intend to read more by PD James. Overall, I liked Private Patient, but I thought it was a little longwinded. However, I attribute some of that to the fact she's been writing for more than 20 years and her publishers give her lots of leeway. I'd like to read some of her earlier books.

Right now I'm reading Last Rituals by Yrsa Sigurdardottir, and LOVING it! Fantastic plot and great research went into this book. The translation must have been top notch because it reads very smoothly.
Any more questions? ;)
So they're not just sites for showing off your reading prowess.
When you are promoting your book, do you think of online libraries?  There are many out there now, maybe many more to come...Shelfari, Library Thing, Goodreads...It's not just a place for readers.  It can also be a place to sell books.

(Sorry all--this was scheduled to post this morning, but didn't!)


  1. I'm on all three sites and wish I had more time for them. Goodreads is the predominent one.

    And did Blogger kick your post into 'draft?' Hate it when that happens!

  2. Totally kicked it into draft! And I'm at work and we've had live coverage all day, so I haven't been able to check it...Crushing. :)

  3. I'm embarrassed to say I didn't even know about Shelfari until I read your post. Great points about how useful these sites can be for both writers as well as readers.

  4. I signed up on Library Thing but I never seem to have time to get back and take advantage of the site. Haven't even tried Shelfari or Goodreads yet. There are so many opportunities, I don't how to keep up.

  5. That's really cool. I never really used that site to the full. Perhaps I now will.


  6. This is great! What an awesome idea, I had never thought about it before but when it comes time to promote my novel I know exactly where there are other places to tag!!! Always so insightful aren't you!?

  7. I'm terrified of adding anything at all to my life at the moment. There is zero time. These sound like great sites, and I plan on adding them in the future - but I just can't do it. *sigh*

  8. Thanks for stopping by & following! I'm enjoying your Blog; I don't read a lot of mysteries, but want to learn from every angle I can -- it can only stregnthen my craft!

  9. Yeah, I love this about shelfari

  10. Michelle, thank you so much for the nice words. I hope you like the other books, when and if you read them. Which one did you read?

  11. Try one of the other Bryant & Mays - you picked the odd one out that's not typical of the series! (then again, perhaps it's just not your cup of tea)

    Best wishes,
    Christopher Fowler

  12. Didn't know about these online sites. Thank you for the information.

  13. Very True. I have had three emails involving shelfari, all of which asked me about the Kristin Cashore book I'd read.

  14. Debbie- Shelfari is my favorite--best graphics and it's the simplest.

    Patricia- It really is a lot to keep up with, you're right!

    Clarissa- Just one more way to use the Internet to a writer's advantage.

    Jen- Awww, shucks. I try. :)

    Jemi- No rush. We all have our limits! I have even had to cut back lately. And I hate that!

  15. Will- It really is good to read outside your genre. It's amazing what you learn through other people's eyes.

    Timothy- I wrote about your's a while back, it was 'A Nail Through the Heart.' I know you get lots of comments, but you responded, encouraging me to read others--and I will! I truly enjoyed that book and am also enjoy Murder is Everywhere.

    Christopher- You know, I probably wouldn't have if you hadn't come on here to comment. Thanks for taking the time. Plenty of other readers sure do encourage me to read your books as well!

    Ann- Always more sites than we can keep in our heads.

    Dawn- It feels good to be asked for one's opinion...and even better to share a great book with others.

  16. I thoroughly enjoy finding out what other readers like and comparing notes, although sometimes I am mystified at how bestsellers get there - Kate Mosse's 'Labyrinth' is a good example (although her Amazon readers reviews give mostly one star ratings).

    I couldn't convince a publisher to take my memoir 'Paperboy' until reviews of ordinary readers, not publisher's readers, convinced him. Since then it's had an unbroken 5-star run of reviews on Amazon!