I recently had a chance to catch up with Krista Wash, author of the wonderful Meratis and Cardis Trilogies, The Invisible Entente Series, and the Witch Hunt Series. I asked this popular indie author a lot of questions, from how she shows up for her art, to how she prepares for launch, and even how she markets her books. This is part 4 of a 5-part series exploring how this talented author shows up for her art. I hope you enjoy it!
If you haven’t read Krista’s work yet, well, get to it – you won’t regret it. Now, let’s dive in!
Krista Walsh Bio:
Known for witty, vivid characters, Krista Walsh never has more fun than getting them into trouble and taking her time getting them out. When not writing, she can be found walking, reading, gaming, or watching a film – anything to get lost in a good story. She currently lives in Ottawa, Ontario.
Laura: So glad to have you here for part 4 of our series, where we focus on Finding Readers, and getting reviews. How do find readers, Krista?
Krista: I’m still learning new ways to do this! So far, my method has been to book ads for the first books of my series and offer an incentive to sign up for my mailing list. As the list grows, the hope is to connect with readers so they look forward to my next release.
I also love joining other authors with Facebook launch parties/other cross promotion ideas. They’re fun, they let me connect with new authors as well as new readers.
Laura: Great methods, that much I know to be true – and I love joining with other authors for Facebook launch parties and cross-promotion. So, now that you’ve mentioned some ways you draw readers, what about the even tougher part – how do you get readers to give you reviews?
Krista: I ask nicely ^.^
With Amazon changing its Terms of Service, it’s getting more difficult to get reviews. People who have legitimately read and enjoyed the book have been unable to leave one because we’re connected on Facebook or Twitter, which are my main methods of connecting with readers. I have a review group that I send ARCs to, and usually the turnaround is about 15-20%. Otherwise, I do send out the occasional reminder on my FB page and newsletter that reviews are the best gift an author can receive (the # of them, not the content. Content is for other readers)
Laura: Oh, the Amazon TOS is frustrating – I’ve experienced the same issue. Amazon doesn’t recognizing that one can have fans who had made friend requests, but instead views it as friends who were “doing one favors” or some such thing. So frustrating. But, moving on: Do you pay for review services such as Kirkus, etc?
Krista: To date, I have not.
Laura: Do you connect with review websites?
Krista: Again, I haven’t yet. It’s possibly an avenue I’ll explore in future, but I’m not sure how effective it is.
Laura: I know – I’ve heard mixed responses to them. Do you feel that building connections with fans helps increase readership, and the likelihood of getting them to leave a review?
Krista: In my experience, yes! My main reason for connecting with readers is gratitude that they took the time to read my work and for wanting to connect with me. It’s incredibly humbling. But I do find that once the connection is made, these readers become your loudest supports, including reviews.
Laura: I agree – there’s nothing quite like fans reaching out – it is beyond humbling – excellent word choice there. What have you found to be the best way to connect with fans/potential readers?
Krista: I love chatting with my readers on Facebook. I have my author page, which is finicky at best to reach people, but I also have my street team and my mailing list, which is full of great people.
Laura: What’s the best approach to winning a reader’s heart?
Krista: As an author, I’m still exploring this question! I make a point to answer all the emails I get and reply to every comment on social media. If a reader takes the time to contact me, I believe it’s only right that I take the same time to reply – I always love when authors I look up to do the same for me.
Laura: I agree – that’s so very important. What’s the fastest way to lose a reader/potential reader?
Krista: Spamming them. There’s nothing more obnoxious than a constant flood of “Buy my book” so I try my best to avoid that.
Laura: Agreed! Any advice to authors struggling with finding readers and getting reviews?
Krista: Look where the trends are in social media and follow the crowds. I haven’t made my way to Snapchat, yet, but that’s where a huge younger demographic is hanging out. Make yourself approachable and have something of value to offer. Once you have the readers, the reviews will come organically.
This is the end of part 4 of the 5-part interview with Author Krista Walsh on Showing Up For Your Art. Stay tuned for part five, our final portion, where Krista answers questions about “Marketing and promotion.” If you missed earlier installmens, you can find them as follows: week 1 is here, week 2 here, and week 3 here.
In the meantime, find Krista – and definitely check out here wonderful work: