How To Support Authors You Like

Mindy Klasky posted a great entry on how to support authors, which I am reposting here. I particularly urge people to look at her first entry. Asking your local library to get books does not cost anything, but is a great boon for us authors!


Her original post can be found here:

There’s a lot of talk in the blogosphere about whether authors have the right to ask readers to support authors.  Some (very vocal!) readers feel that all authorial requests are out of bounds, that authors unfairly exploit their position to dominate readers by suggesting any form of support.

If you’re one of those people, please don’t read any further.  You’ll only be angry and frustrated with me.

If, on the other hand, you are intrigued by the possibility of helping authors that you like to read, here are some ways (two free, two with some cost attached) that you can do that:

  • Ask your public library to purchase one or more copies. Most libraries are thrilled to have their patrons request books.  Libraries *want* to have their collections read widely.
  • If you read the book, post reviews online. If you keep your own blog, post it there.  If you want your review to be read widely, re-post it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Powell’s, and other online sites.  Of course, if you don’t want to “dilute” a personal blog by posting at third party sites, then don’t (but many reviewers enjoy far greater readership by harnessing the online behemoths.)  And I shouldn’t have to say this, but your reviews should always be your honest opinion of the work, untempered by who might come across them once they’re released in the wild. 
  • If you can, buy the author’s book, preferably soon after the release date. Publishers and booksellers  pay attention to how fast a new book “moves” – sort of like motion picture studios watch the opening weekend for their films.  Of course, if you can’t buy early in a book’s release, buy (if and) when you can.
  • When possible, patronize bricks-and-mortar stores (as opposed to online vendors). When bricks-and-mortar stores sell stock, they usually reorder, to refill their physical shelves and reach out to brand new customers.  Of course, online sales are far better than none, so if you don’t have a physical store to support, go virtual!

Thousands of books will be released from now till the end of the year.  If you find one (or many, many more!) from an author you want to see write more, then consider these options.