Tuesday, November 15, 2011

More from Bonnie S. Calhoun ~ Founder and Publisher of Christian Fiction Online Magazine

Okay so you’ve decided that you are going to take the plunge, gather up a large group of book reviewers, and put on a blog tour for your latest novel. Okey dokey smokey…how hard could it be?
Well let’s see…first you need to decide if you want actual book reviewers or do you just want influencers. There is a world of difference in the two, and never the twain shall meet. 
Influencers are the friendly souls that know and love you and want to help get the word out about your latest book. They sign on to “influence” others to pick up your work and read it.
Where as actual book reviewers…do just that. They review the book. Now sometimes that turns out to be a great thing…and sometimes not. Everyone has their own personal perception of what they read. (This goes back to my first post about “target audience”) Usually when people sign up for a blog tour, they are are genuinely hoping to like the book.
So okay…you’ve spent the time gathering the reviewers, setting the time frame for them to post, getting the books into their hands. What could go wrong? This sounds easy.
There is an old adage…when something can go wrong it will. Let’s say you have 40 people posting for your tour. I bet I can find at least 40 things to go wrong *snort-giggle*!
Let’s look at some of the recent serenity sappers that I’ve encountered…
  1. Several tours where the books didn’t get delivered on time for the reviewers to read them before needing to post. (Now sometimes that’s not always a killer. A lot of people are willing to post an introduction about the book, and add a review later.)
  2. Several people went to the hospital for unexpected surgeries. Fortunately they all turned out fine, but you can hardly demand for someone to post from their hospital bed…even when the hospital does have WiFi!
  3. And personal problems galore!
  4. A new baby decided to show up 3 weeks early…the little guy just couldn’t wait!
  5. Floods, tornadoes, and wildfires…oh my! And let’s not EVEN get into the winter season and major snowstorms. Yanna…I found out that the Post Office doesn’t always deliver in bad weather like they used to in the old days *snort-giggle*
  6. And let’s not even discuss one recent book that was published by a Christian publisher…and had NUMEROUS cuss words in it! That one REALLY gave me a headache…and quite a few people who refused to post for it (which I totally understood)
  7. And then horror upon horror…don’t even think about the people that for one reason or another don’t like the book. I prefer for people to tell the truth about how they feel about a book without attacking the actual author, but a lot of times Christians are loathe to say anything negative about another Christians work, so they just don’t post…what are you gonna do?
And then sometimes the blog tour fairy smiles upon you and everything goes absolutely right! Auhhh…the feeling doesn’t usually last too long. So enjoy it while you have it. And happy blog touring…it can make you old before your time, and it’s not for the faint at heart!

About the Author...

Bonnie S. Calhoun is the Founder and Publisher of (CFOM) Christian Fiction Online Magazine. She is also the Owner and Director of the (CFBA) Christian Fiction Blog Alliance which is the parent organization for the magazine. And she serves as the current President for (CAN) Christian Authors Network. She is the Northeast Zone Director for (ACFW) American Christian Fiction Writers, and won their Mentor of the Year Award for 2011.

In addition to her passion for spreading the word about Christian fiction, Bonnie is also an author of snarky suspense. Her novel Cooking The Books (A Sloane Templeton Novel) will release from Abingdon Press in April 2012. It is presently available for digital e-reader download if you are a book reviewer. Go to NetGalley.com, Abingdon Press as the publisher.

Picture from Andy Eklund's Creative Streak.


  1. I have just recently discovered the value of hashtags thanks to Sandra Moore who is doing a fabulous job of keeping us Twitter savvy (waving to Sandra!!)

    I was reluctant to join Twitter at first because I thought "one more social media? Really?" But it really has been a wonderful tool for driving traffic to BB.

    Thanks for the great tips, Bonnie!

  2. I use both blog and twitter and love them. Don't do facebook though. Somehow that one doesn't appeal to me as much. It's amazing and inspiring to see who in all the world follows you. I love to follow this site! Keep up the good work!

  3. Thanks for the encouragement, Linda! I'm glad we're finding stuff to keep you reading (and following). :-)


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