Yes, it’s true. I’m a stalker. Before you call the police on me, please realize that I have no nefarious intentions. It started innocently enough (and isn’t that what they all say?). Whenever I had the good fortune that someone liked a blog post during one of my blog tours, I’d check them out. Do they have a website? Twitter? Goodreads? Facebook? Oh wait! Is this a book blogger? Do they accept book review requests? Yeah, I’d wind myself up pretty good.
But stalking is good. Stalking increases my contacts within the online community of readers and writers, which means more Twitter followers, Facebook followers, blog followers (you get the point), which will – hopefully! – turn into more books sales. So, this is me advocating stalking. Here’s how I do it:
Likes on blog posts. You see those little avatars at the bottom of a blog post next to likes? Right click that bad boy and hit open in new tab. If the person has properly configured their gravatar, you’ll see information about who they are and – bonus! – their website. (FYI: If you haven’t properly configured your gravatar, stop what you’re doing and do it. NOW! Seriously. Right. Now.) This is where the work starts. Head over to the website. Is this a writer, reader? Jackpot! Follow that blog. Do it! Hit the button and follow. But your work is not done. What about other social media? Follow. Follow. Follow.
You’re a writer and this is a book blogger? Bonus! Find the blogger’s review policy and – this is really important – read it. And then – even more important – follow it. I’m not joking. I delete any and all review requests that don’t follow my review policy. Totally fair since I actually have written in my review policy that I will delete requests that don’t adhere to my policy.
If the person’s gravatar is not properly configured, you might only get a name. My experience is that this is often a blog name. Google that name. Now go back and follow the above instructions.
Twitter followers. I take this stalking business seriously. I not only stalk likes on blog posts that mention my books, I also stalk Twitter followers. It’s not really stalking if they followed me first, right? Anyway, don’t be fooled by a person’s Twitter handle (look at me – knowing the lingo and everything). Sometimes book bloggers tweet about a variety of things that interest them and not only books. Shocking, I know. Because I obviously have an obsessive personality, I check out the websites of all my followers. Is this someone who may possibly – even if it’s only because they’re stuck on a deserted island with nothing to do – read one of my books? Yes? Then, proceed to follow stalking protocol as outlined above.
Blog followers. This is an easy one. If someone follows my blog, I follow theirs. End of.
Facebook followers. Facebook is a bit trickier. I’m adamant about keeping my private Facebook profile and my author page separate, although I have been known to brag to my friends about great things that happen to me in the writing world. Not that that happens often or anything. Well, really, ever which is why I have to make shit up. But that’s neither here nor there. Most of the followers of my author page on Facebook are private persons. And this is where I draw the line. And you thought I didn’t have any morals at all? Wrong! I do. Loosey-goosey morals are still morals.
That’s all folks. If you still feel the need to call the police, go ahead. I dare you. Hold on. The doorbell’s ringing …