Tag Archives: Goodreads

How Do Authors Become Known?


This morning I continued my research into how authors manage to promote their writing. First destination was Goodreads, which I registered for as a reader several years ago and rarely visit.

How do authors use Goodreads?

I got there after looking up about Auckland author Tina Clough, after seeing her comments about her favourite books in the Press (Saturday, August 5, 2017, p17). She is featured on Goodreads after the publication of her newest book: The Chinese Proverb.

This is Tina’s third novel posted on Goodreads. She has been a member since August 2013 about the time she published her first novel: The Girl Who Lived Twice. Her novels have been reviewed/commented on by 9 reviewers, but I was unable to read the reviews (there must be a way, but this technically challenged author (me) couldn’t find the right link).

What I discovered about Goodreads, thanks to Tina, was that authors have a number of ways to promote themselves on Goodreads:

  • You can blog
  • You can publicise your website
  • You can list your own book (books) as ones you are reading so it appear on lists
  • And you can add events (book launches/interviews/podcasts etc)

5000-strong support group

I was sure there were other ways to advance yourself as an author. So I went looking at other authors who wanted to ‘connect’ with me (I told you it was a long time since I’d visited).

I found out that Goodreads has a ‘group’ that is a Showcase for Readers and Writers. Within this community authors can bring a little hype about who they are and what they have recently published. It may be talking amongst yourselves, but who knows who might be reading!

Goodreads also sponsor a Support For Indie Authors website: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/154447-support-for-indie-authors

This is already in the 5000 plus membership range, but for $US12 per year shares a mass of information.

New Zealand support

In New Zealand author support comes in bucket-loads from the New Zealand Society of Authors (linked to the international organisation PEN). This organisation will publish a a supplied review of your work and share it with members on the month it is selected. The lists are accessed here:  http://authors.org.nz/writers/new-books/

Writers who belong to NZSA can be searched and I found a long time friend and children’s author, Helen McKinley, whose ‘Grandma’ series has been delighting children for a decade.

The NZSA now supports authors who are self-published and /or are eBook authors. In doing a search for my own name I discovered that I have not entered any information and I’m missing a huge opportunity. That will be rectified promptly.


Heather Sylvawood, Amazon Author

Is self-publishing and promotion keeping you out of the Indie market?

In past decades, writers, good and bad, have been turned away from the gates of traditional publishing.  The published author was often the one who had managed to swim through a sea of rejections and keep crashing against the seawalls until they found a way in.

Self-publishing has changed in 5 years

Nowadays, with traditional publishers fighting Amazon, and self-publishers squabbling amongst themselves, you could be led to believe that becoming self-published is easy. You just have to write the book and put it up on Amazon.

Maybe that was true of self-publishing five years ago, but successful self-publishing today is a combination of carefully planned:

  • Writing for a popular market
  • Good editing (as it still is in traditional publishing)
  • Well designed book covers that catch attention
  • A carefully crafted launch strategy
  • Continual self-promotion


Today you have to develop a ‘presence’ on the Internet with Blogs, author websites, a regular presence on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, popping up with comments on other sites where writers/readers might be – like Goodreads website.

Self-publishing success = quantity

So where is the time for writing goals? Well, it seems from the blogs and books I read, authors can no longer linger over the fine details of a book until it reaches perfection. Instead they must be writing a book a month, or as writer Alex Foster in Writing a Kindle Book a Week suggests writing quantity and accepting smaller income from each publication.

Video Titled: How To Write More And Create A Daily Writing Habit

Joanna Penn, author of three thrillers, is setting her sights on a writing goal  of creating three books a year using a method suggested by authors Dean Wesley Smith and Kris Rush The video is well worth a watch and you might want to follow-up with a look at Wesley Smith’s website where he demonstrates his method by publicly revealing how many words per day he puts on paper.(http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/productivity-workshop-starting/).

Finding the magical key to self-publishing


Get the picture?

Currently challenged as I am, with editing my completed novel, juggling life and expectations of others, plus a part-time contract, how I can achieve a greater output eludes me. The trouble for me is that there are so many blogs and books to read on the subject, I don’t have time to discover the magical key to major output AND successful self-publishing.

So hello other writers who are struggling with this plethora of ideas and options. Self-publishing isn’t easier; it’s just more possible with a lot more work.

Heather Sylvawood, (struggling) Amazon Author