Remember the "groupies" of yesteryear? Thousands of people flocked to the Beatles' concerts. People stood in line to
see Elvis for days, camping out on the streets so they wouldn't lose their places. What garners such devotion? Even more importantly,
how can you create the same kind of hype for your favorite authors?
There are things an author can do to help their fan base along. Some of them are as simple as including a short "Note
from the author" at the back of each book. Big name authors like Bertrice Small and Debbie Macomber often do this. Star* author
Janet Elaine Smith says she often gets as much feedback from readers who reacto to her notes at the end of the book as she
does from the books themselves. Some things you might include are the way the story was born, anything interesting and unusual
about the research for the book, and always include your website and e-mail addresses so your fans can easily reach you. If
you include your snail mail address (remember, some people don't have a computer or access to the Internet), it is advisable
to get a post office box, rather than advertising your street address.
Yes, your "groupies" might be a "virtual" bunch of people. So how do you get them together? It is relatively simple.
Set up a chat room on your website, then invite all of your fans to attend a special night just for them, when they can ask
any questions they want to.
Another way to get your "groupies" involved is to send out a newsletter. If your website has a lot of traffic, you might
just post it at the beginning of each month on there instead of sending it out individually. Let your readers know that the
first of each month it will be there. Repeat traffic is vital for your survival, especially if you plan to write numerous
And if you are a fan and you would like to get acquainted with some of the other fans of a certain author, what a pleasant
surprise it is for a fan to do something special for that favorite author. Set up a chat room of your own, or you can go to
places like Yahoo! and set up a fan club, inviting people to join an e-mail group to discuss the author and their books. They
also have chat rooms available for each e-group. How do you get people to know about it? One of the best ways is to make sure
the author's name is in the title of your e-group. That way, when people go to a search engine to see what is happening in
the life of the author, they will be apt to run across the group and sign up.
There is a lot of truth in the old adage, "The more the merrier!"