FEBRUARY'S NEARLY GONE - SPRING IS IN THE AIR! By Pam Howes
That's not strictly true, as half the country is still under water and likely to be for many months, but - there are loads of colourful little flowers popping up in the garden, birds are showing their faces at the feeder again and the new season lambs are arriving daily. So all in all, something to look forward to. It's been an awful month weather-wise and I hope no one suffered too much, if any, damage to their homes, self, and cars. Apart from some of the fascia under the roof tiles blowing off and a small branch falling onto my car bonnet, we fared well here and consider ourselves very lucky. And looking on the bright side, we haven't had snow - yet…
The month of February started off really well for me. On the 1st, my favourite female crime author Mandasue Heller, did a book signing at the local Waterstone's and I got a copy of her latest novel Respect, signed. This is the second time I've met Mandasue and she's such a nice lady to speak to; very friendly and patient with all her fans. I don't buy many paperbacks these days, but I do love a signed copy to keep safe.
On the 3rd it was the 55th anniversary of the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens. As I
write sixties rock'n'roll based romances, I ran a half-price sale of all my books on my Facebook author page to commemorate the anniversary, and it was a great success. Lots of nice sales. Which brings me to the subject of - how many people use their FB author page to full advantage? A few discoveries recently have led me to boosting certain posts for around £3 a throw. It's amazing how many extra views, likes and sales this can bring in. It's certainly worth thinking about. I've started to use my page to chat with readers about everything and anything, not just the books. I've posted old photographs of actual places that feature in my novels, clubs, and record stores etc. The readers/followers engage really well with this and the ones that enjoyed the stories will let others know. Word of mouth is your best selling tool. In fact, I'm finding the FB page a better bet for exchanging comments than my website blog or Twitter. Although I still do the odd Tweet or two I'm gaining new followers on FB by the day. You can also add your book links via the READ MY BOOK App, so your readers can go straight to the page to buy. Saves them searching around. So many authors don't include a link to their work, missing real sales opportunities.
Earlier this week, after a sudden unexpected burst of sunshine showed up the cobwebs on the wall above my desk, I had a bit of a spring clean. I've shredded so much paper I can actually see my computer and desk again. I was feeling bogged down and uninspired, sitting here surrounded by a ton of rubbish. Now I feel like I've got space, and a serious urge to crack on with Ruby Tuesday, the second novel in my fairground romance series.
And last but not least, take a look at the photo below and feel inspired. Two new-born lambs, named Ritchie and Buddy, after my heroes. Just look at the contented face of their mum, Ally. If they don't make you smile and feel that spring is just around the corner, then nothing will!
Have fun. Bye until next time. Pam.