I stopped by the library today to drop off old books, and pick up a couple of new ones. Because I just watched this Neil Gaiman video yesterday about how we find our books, and what piracy really means, it got me thinking…. How do I really find new books and authors?
First, the three books I picked out:
Kim Harrison’s, “Into the Woods”. This is a collection of short stories from the Hallows series, and I absolutely LOVE the Hallows series. I’ve read every single book I’ve found, tracked down the graphic novels, and even own a couple. While I describe it as “A female Harry Dresden” that only scratches the surface. But, like Jim Butcher, Harrison is a FANTASTIC author who adds lots of sub plots, lots of emotion, and great twists that keep you coming back for more. So of course I got it.
Patricia Briggs’, “Frost Burns”. This is another series that I’ve read all of. At least I’ve read all of the Mercy Thompson novels. I haven’t gotten into the Omega or Alpha series because really I just love Mercy Thompson. While not my favorite, Briggs is a great writer, and I really enjoy her books.
The third book is by a new author. New to me, anyway. Diana Rowland writes the “White Trash Zombie” novels. I happened upon her by browsing the “new” section at the library, and the cover looked really interesting so I picked it up. From the title I really didn’t expect anything but fluff, but I was nicely surprised. Angel, the zombie, struggles with everything a normal girl struggles with, plus her natural desire to eat brains as well.
They didn’t have another zombie book at the library, so this time I picked up “Sins of the Demon“. The cover looked interesting, and I like her style of writing, so I thought I’d try it out.
So, the question… how did I find these writers?
I found Kim Harrison when a friend of mine suggested her book. She owned ALL of them, so I borrowed the first in the series and I was hooked. I even went to facebook and followed Harrison. She’s a really awesome person, likable, witty, and smart. She loves getting direct feedback from her readers on cover art, and other things. Win-win all over the place.
A Patricia Briggs happened to be on a shelf one day when I was sitting in a library between classes at the college. I was bored, and it was there, just sitting on a “suggested reading” shelf. It talked about werewolves, and the girl on the cover had a very no nonsense look about her… so I picked it up and started reading. I ended up checking it out and taking it home for the week. Came back for more, too.
The third one I found while browsing the “new arrivals”. I do this a lot, looking for new books with interesting covers and descriptions, and seeing if I can find anything to strike my fancy. This is one of my favorite ways to find new books since the new arrivals shelf is a miss match of every genre, including non fic, and I love all of it.
I do buy books, often ebooks, but I usually only buy new books from authors I already like. I only by print books from authors I LOVE, or from used book stores where I can find little known, or forgotten books for less then a dollar.
I have to agree with Gaiman. Free books are POWERFUL. Pirated versions are just more opportunities for people to find your books. I know the majority of new authors that I’ve taken a chance on were because of free, or really cheep books.
I’d love to be able to buy, or even read, all of the books by all of the authors I love, but that would take a LOT of money. So when I publish my own books I keep this in mind. I want more people to read my books, and maybe they will buy a few. Maybe they’ll get print copies and then give them away. Every new set of eyes on my books, every person who tells someone else how great this particular book is, that’s one more potential person who might look into my books.
So, in that spirit, if you haven’t read one of my books and you’d like to just send me a message and I will be happy to send you a PDF, or mobi file of one of them for free. Just look at my book shelf here, and send a message to crissymoss AT gmail DOT com, and I’ll get it to you shortly.