First I received an e-mail from a friend, telling me my first Sylvia and Willie mystery, The Prairie Grass Murders, was one of the mysteries featured in an article in the newest Colorado Country Life magazine, a publication of the Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association.
That evening, a member of my critique group handed me a copy to see for myself. Not only was my book featured in the article, but the magazine’s cover photo featured a bookshelf full of mysteries as the background, including mine.
The article is called Mad for Mysteries and was written by Julie Simmons. In a case like this, I like to check amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com to see if my sales ranks received a bump. I wasn’t too hopeful in this case, because The Prairie Grass Murders hardcover has been remaindered and is no longer available new from booksellers. But here’s the surprise: the sales rank on amazon.com includes sales of new and used books from the associate booksellers. My sales rank of The Prairie Grass Murders had jumped to about 80,000 (and that’s a great number considering where it’s been lately). Luckily, I still have new copies of the book to sell at my upcoming local booksignings.
This piece of accidental exposure points out something we often miss as we look for ways to promote our books. There are many publications across the country like Colorado Country Life that do book reviews, like to feature articles on local authors or books set in the region, or would be willing to publish your article on a subject of interest to their readers and include your own book, website, and blog information in your bio. Some listings might be in Writer’s Market, others available through internet searches. It’s an opportunity we can’t afford to pass up.