Last month, I put up a post about various links to people “talking” about social networking. Included in the list was Martha Engber’s post about GoodReads, which included a brief discussion on how authors can use the site to market their books.
Right after I blogged about this, I signed up for GoodReads. (You can see the button to my GoodReads page over there on the right–it took me WAY longer to add that button than to complete my GR profile, BTW!) I admit, signing up was, for me, sort of an exploratory mission. I’ve never been one to catalog my books in any ways, and I was just stepping out of a review job and was looking forward to NOT writing up my opinions for a while.
Well, of course, I found myself having fun. I do like listing the books I’m reading, and I like checking out the updates I get about my Friends. I haven’t started using the site as a source for my own to-read list, but that may be because I’m knee shoulder deep in reading research books for The Critiquer’s Survival Guide right now.
The other thing I haven’t yet dug into is the marketing/promotion aspects of the site that Martha talks about. I’m curious, though, so I spent a little time today browsing the web to see what other people think about GoodReads. The overall consensus seems to be that it’s a wonderful sort-of online book group, but there isn’t that much talk out there about using it as an author, not just a reader.
I did find a few links, in addition to Martha’s, for you to check out.
- Scott Gilbertson gives a nice description of the overall site:
- Emilee Newman Bowles at Ink & Paper Group gives a brief summary of features for authors:
- This review by Lisa Ruefenacht probably goes into the most detail about how an author can use the site:
I also took a first step and browsed the GoodReads Help pages for info about the author’s program. The best thing I saw is that, yes, it’s free to set up your own page, if you’re a published author. Always a nice feature. You can list all your books (or just the ONE that’s coming out next fall!), put up an excerpt of your writing, add y our schedule of events, and run book giveaways.
Here are a few links to GoodReads information about how authors can use their site:
- The Author Program
- First Reads: The Book Giveaway program
- Interviews with GoodReads authors:
- Q&A sessions with GoodReads authors:
Are you on GoodReads? How do you use it–for fun as a reader, or promotion as a writer? (Or both?) Or do you belong to one of the other book-based social networking sites–LibraryThing or Shelfari? What do you think of them? I’d love to hear your take on these sites in the comments!