Seven days to go! Here's how you can help
This time next week I will be a published author. A week from today, the first novel I ever wrote can be read by people anywhere, any time. It's what I've wanted ever since I was a little girl, and on Friday 17th July I am a novelist.
To an extent, the next phase for Secrets of a Serial Killer is out of my hands and handed to you: lovely readers. You can love my book, or you can hate it (although I hope you don't!). You can shout about it from the rooftops, recommend it to friends, review it online, or give up after the first page and never think about it again (or... pretend to like it anyway, please and thank you).
So in advance of the ebook publication, here's a few things that readers can do that would really, really help make Secrets of a Serial Killer a success:
1) Buy a copy of the book
This one is a bit obvious, but worth stating that I would really like lots of people to buy a copy of Secrets of a Serial Killer. Multiple copies. One for each member of your family. And your pet. Even if you're not into serial killers roaming around derelict hospitals (each to their own), I'd be massively grateful if you'd buy a copy, or buy it for a friend, or as a gift.
To some people, 99p isn't super cheap, and for those people I also have good news: authors get paid when you check out their book at your local library.
If you don't have an e-reader or use an e-reader app on your phone/PC, the paperback is out in October, and pre-orders help authors so much: they indicate to the publisher and to retailers that readers are interested, that this is a book worth paying a little extra attention. Ask your local bookshop if they can order you a copy, or ask your local library to get a copy for their shelves.
2) Write a review and post it online Just one sentence helps immeasurably. I didn't realise until recently how important reviews are to authors, and how much time they spend poring over them (this part is NOT healthy nor recommended, but it is painfully true nonetheless). If you have read Secrets of a Serial Killer, please consider writing a few lines about the book and posting online on or after publication, especially on Amazon and Waterstones. Even if you bought the book elsewhere, you can post a review on those websites. Among writers' circles, the rumour is that industry people really start to pay attention when a book has 50 or more reviews on Amazon. That may be only a rumour, but I would like to find out for definite!
3) Tell your friends
Debut novelists thrive from word of mouth. If you can, please talk about Secrets of a Serial Killer on social media and share your review, or a link to buy the book. Take a picture of yourself reading it and stick it on Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / wherever you like with the #secretsofaserialkiller hashtag. The more people who hear about it, who recognise the cover or who think 'there's that book again, maybe I should check it out', the happier your author friend is (aka me, in this case)!
4) Invite me places
This one's a bit niche, but if you're in a book club or have access to a group of people who enjoy reading, please consider suggesting Secrets of a Serial Killer for an event or book club pick. Right now is the very start of my writing career and I am still ridiculously excited that people might read something I have written. I am happy to answer book club questions, come to an event, dial in via Zoom and read a bit from the book, or anything at all.
There are lots of other things that readers can do to support their author friends right now, and Tim Clare has amassed a great list if you're interested in reading more.
In the meantime though, thank you for reading the post, thank you for being a lovely reader and thank you for even considering doing any of the four things I mention here. You're great, and I do hope you enjoy the book when it publishes next week.