Peggy Bechko: Goodreads


by Peggy Bechko

I really like Goodreads. As a writer it offers lots of opportunities for exposure and interaction with readers, present and future and fans. And as a reader it offers lots of great new possibilities.

So if you haven’t visited before as a writer or a reader my might well say what’s all the excitement about?

Well, it’s a busy site with lots of page views and new pages going up all the time. There are lots of books, giveaways and links to authors’ pages where you’ll find even more links to giveaways, videos, author’s blogs and more.  There’s a heckuva lot to explore on GoodReads.

As a writer you’ll no doubt want (or maybe already have) a Goodreads Author Profile page with the author program. If you don’t, you probably will want to head on over there now and create your page with links to your books, etc. The process, as with most of these things, is easy. Poke around the site and you’ll see the links pretty quickly. Besides, it really is a good idea for you to learn your way around. I’ll admit, there are times when I kind of get lost myself with all those little buttons and sections of the dashboard and site in general. Mostly though it’s a fun lost wherein I usually discover a new writer or spot a question from a reader I missed. Once you find the way to announce yourself they’ll want a bit of info from you such as letting them know you’re an author. After you confirm it can take a couple of days to confirm you actually ARE and author so be patient.

Once it’s established it’s really you you’ll want to set up your profile page. Really, set it up. Give a little info about you, maybe a personal nugget or two that your readers would love to know about. Don’t forget to upload a photo since your readers love to get a look at you and the photo makes your page more engaging. Add your twitter name if you’re on it, a book trailer if you have one, link to a blog sit you run or your webpage; all the little things that make up you. In fact, while you’re poking around consider setting “Ask the Author” to on. It’ll provide a few basic questions you can answer or skip and gives a great opportunity for writers and readers to connect. In fact, if you like, head over to my Goodreads page scroll down just a little and ask away.

My advice to other writers is think about an answer before you just dash it off. Your fans will appreciate it more and share a good answer that actually contains insightful or useful information. Oh, and you don’t have to answer every single one. A little secret is the questions are visible only to the writer until said writer answers them. Email will go out to the person who asked the question once you answer and of course then it’s visible on your feed as well.

And readers – hey what’s the hold up? This is one great site for books. You can see new releases, discover new writers, put out your own reviews, join groups to share reading experiences, see what others are reading and share what you have next on your list.

A great reader’s community to join. And there’s the opportunity to dive into the “giveaways” under the “explore” button and see what book you have the chance to win. There are always pages and pages and pages of giveaways you can enter. Fiction and Non-fiction. Debut books, books by established authors, books in a series and how-to books to name a few. And at the same time you enter you can add it to your “to-read” shelf in case you aren’t a lucky winner and want to read it after the giveaway anyway. And bounce around in the many pages to find ones that interest you – if you simply start from the beginning you’ll never reach the end.

It’s a great way to have a never-ending list of books you hope to read. As if we readers need even more! Still, I like it a lot. And you help the writer as well since putting his or her book on your ‘to-read’ list gives it more exposure.

So if you haven’t investigated Goodreads – do, and join. Then get your reading and writing friends to join. You can find friends from Facebook and more there as well. Join groups that interest you and connect there with other readers and writers you enjoy. As a reader be sure to talk about the books you love and the ones you don’t. Be thoughtful and give reasons and don’t just slam a book because you’re in a bad mood. Writers be good to your fans. Don’t spam them and continually push your book. If you write a blog be sure to link it in so readers and fans can find out even more about you and your work.

Goodreads – a fun place to share the enjoyment of reading.

Peggy Bechko is a Contributing Editor to TVWriter™. You can learn more about her HERE.