Friday, March 12, 2010

Contacting authors...

It's Friday and I'm too lazy to start a review LOL. Seems to be often the case for some reasons. Ah well, no review doesn't mean no blogging, right? :P

I thought it's been a while since I started a discussion. Lucky for me, I had a topic in mind, so it wasn't hard to come up with one :)


My question today: Do you ever/often contact/e-mail authors? For what reasons?

I'm curious because a couple of weeks ago, I was talking with Monroe and she mentioned she e-mailed a few authors to let them know how much she enjoyed their books. Then, today, I was on Tracy's blog and in one of the comments, she mentioned she contacted Anne Bishop to ask a question concerning her new Black Jewels trilogy.

With the internet around, it's much easier to contact an author. You don't have to pay the stamp, don't even need to find a mailbox... LOL. All you need is their email address which can usually be found on their website.

I have to say, I'm not the kind of persons who will e-mail authors to let them know how much I liked their books. There's nothing wrong to do so -  it's actually pretty awesome if you do so... It's just not me. Most of what I have to say about books, I do it via my blog. However, I did email a few for questions, after I couldn't find an answer on their websites/blogs. I remember contacting Robyn Carr and asking her where I could get the last book of her Grace Valley trilogy, LOL, and if there was any plans for re-printing.

I think my attitude can be explained by my whole mentality of keeping my distances from an author. I like being a fangirl LOL... and being friends, getting to know authors on a personal level, well it changes me as a reader... but of course, that's just me.

So, what about you? Do you often contact authors? If you don't, why not? Also, as an author, do you like being contacted? Do you answer to all the emails?

16 comments:

  1. I used to e-mail authors when I lurved one of their books. In fact, I used to do this fairly regularly - but now, like you, I tend to save the gushing for my blog. I should pick up the habit again. What author doesn't like getting gushy fan mail? LOL

    I will e-mail with the occasional question if I can't find the answer on their web site and/or blog. Usually it involves a secondary character getting their own story. "Any plans for more books in X series?" That kind of thing. But that's generally a rarity. I think the last time I e-mailed an author with such a question was a year ago....

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  2. I used to email authors a lot when I LOVED their books, like Wendy. But now, not so much. I think I could say ditto to everything Wendy said, actually! lol

    I ended up emailing Anne Bishop because I just couldn't wrap my mind around how she would add another book to Cassie's story since it seemed so wrapped up at the end of Shalador's Lady. Of course doing that I now have no idea what's next on the agenda for the BJT! lol

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  3. On this subject, I'm more in line with you, Nath. I don't e-mail authors and tend to keep a certain distance. I save the gushing for the books I like/love on my blog. I do think it's great when they take the time to stop by a reader's blog and leave a comment.

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  4. I think I've contacted an author 3 times in my entire reading lifetime. Two of the times were because I needed questions answered that I couldn't locate on my own and the 3rd was to tell the author what an impact her book had on a friend of mine who was really stressed out at the time.

    I don't really contact authors because I'm not the gushing type...and I feel weird writing to them. I guess, like you, I prefer to stay a fangirl on the sideline.

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  5. Hey Nath
    I do contact authors if a book moves me or affects me a certain way. I don't have a blog but I don't know if that would make a difference. When I started last year I had only contacted a few authors, one of who asked if she could share my email with her chat group. She also invited me to the chat. That is how I met Lea. She noticed my address in the email & realized we lived 5 minutes from each other. I still marvel at that coincidence. I wouldn't have met you or Kristie or Cindy either & I can't imagine that. I went to my high school reunion that weekend & a boy I'd grown up with had become a writer. I told him it boggled my mind how receptive authors were to emails. I would never think to email Roger Federer because I love his game or Sandra Bullock because I love her movies. He said that writing is very solitary & that's why they appreciate it so much. I vowed then that I would keep doing it. My most rewarding one was from an author who dared to write an unusual HEA. She almost made me cry when she said she was saving my email because she'd gotten so much flak from everybody about this ending but she refused to change it. Sorry this is so long.

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  6. Before the internet I would have never contacted an author only because I didn't know how. Now, I'm not really sure. I *think* I've only written one e-mail to an author but I could be wrong. I wrote on a bulletin board about a book and was gushy - much to my surprise the author saw my post and was thrilled. She told me authors loved that kind of feed back.

    That said, I'm not a fan of being gushy except on my blog where people already know I'm wacky.

    I once thought about writing Anne Stuart and decided I wouldn't be nearly coherent enough. Bob also says the world would not really survive if we met face to face.

    And then there is the last reason that is similar to you. I want to read the story - I love the author because of the book and I want them to continue writing. After that, sometimes what you find out makes it hard to read the books for what they are. LKH comes to mind. TMI.

    Right now two authors - Nalini Singh and Kresley Cole would be authors I wwould write if I could string a sentence together for either of them. Ah, well.

    Cindys

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  7. I like to keep a distance so no. I actually was surprised when I started reading romance all those years back and realized other readers contacted authors. The idea had never crossed my mind before! LOL

    Like you said, nothing wrong with it, but it's just not me. I would feel weird I guess.

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  8. I've never written a fan email to an author in my life - like you, I save any squeeeing for my blog :-)

    And before the days of blogging, no, I didn't either. Thinking back about it, I guess I had no idea how to even go about getting their contact details.

    I think I also have the impression (probably mistaken!) that authors are drowning in a sea of fanmail, and I probably shouldn't contribute to it. Also, apart from "gosh, I really really love your book", umm... what else would I say?

    Li

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  9. I do on the very rare occasion when I've really enjoyed their books just to let them know that I did.
    My thoughts are that I appreciate when told I've done a good job and authors are people too *g*. And they are a lot more isolated in their careers than the normal person.
    That's the only reason though - I wouldn't contact them to say I didn't like their book for example.

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  10. In case i didn't bore you enough - 3 things that shocked me this past year:
    A lot of writers still work for a living. They are not all in Nora Roberts category. They are like you & me but their part-time job is more fun.

    I went to an RWA meeting in January. I cannot believe the level of support these writers give to each other. There is zero competitiveness there. Every success one of them has is celebrated by all.

    I was shocked to read that an author I would be gushing over, gushes over her fave author while I see them on the same level.

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  11. I have contacted several authors by email in the past to tell them how I loved their book, it's emotional importance to me or even just to ask questions about an intricate plot or world building. For me, an author's online personality is a factor to me when I email an author. If I already visit their blog and exchange comments or comment to each other on twitter, I'm more likely to send an email to her. Also, if an author encourages contact with her readers on her website or in a book, I'm more comfortable emailing them as well.

    With all that being said, I haven't emailed an author in a while. And I don't visit as many author blogs these days either. I just don't have the time because the number of reader, cooking and crafting blogs that I follow keeps growing! ;)

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  12. Wendy - True, true. I do think they enjoy getting fan mail, but on the other hand, do they read it all? :P

    Tracy - LOL. It seems many are like you, used to email authors a lot :) I think it's very nice :)

    Hmmm, I guess the last book is going to be more about Theran and another queen. Gosh, I hope it's not Kermilla - who learned from her mistake!! That'd be bad. I thought perhaps Theran would finally realize that Cassie is a good queen, but it wouldn't make sense to create a new territory and the rest of the 4 provinces would join...

    Hopefully, they'll be a synopsis soon! :)

    Hilcia - Oh for sure, it's always special when an author post a comment and I understand that most authors are like us - regular folks LOL. Still, I prefer for them to be special in my mind LOL.

    Tabitha - I think it's really worth contacting an author when the book really had an impact on you or an author.

    LOL, I agree with you :) It's funny to write to them... fangirl on the sideline suits us much better, right Tabzy? :P

    Mary G - LOL, no, it's great to read Mary. I guess you're right, being an author is a very solitary job. Hmmm, something to really think about :)

    LOL, and yes, the three facts that you brought up - it seems that the internet makes the readers more aware of them. I remember Rosie or Kristie mentioning that other authors would line up at book signing to get their book signed by favorite authors as well :D

    I think authors are much more down-to-earth people... and you know, it's been fun to see which authors are buddies, which authors are beta readers for other or help each other :)

    Cindy - LOL, I remember b4 the internet, sometimes, you'd see P.O. Box address at the back of books so you could contact the authors. Internet is much better, right? :P

    And right, some of us simply don't know how to gush haha. "I love your books!" just don't seem to be enough :P

    Taja - LOL, I guess we're passive fangirls :P

    Li - Exactly! What else to say? and LOL, yes, I imagine their inbox so full!! and I mean, b4, they actually had letters... now, what do they do with the emails? Keep them all?!?

    Kristie - True, true. Everyone like to hear about doing a good job... but then, with the internet, there are blogs and forums and reviews where they can see how much they are appreciated... but I guess it's not the same...

    Christine - Interesting. Show how everyone is different :D

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  13. I rarely contact authors privately. I'm more likely to leave a comment when an author is doing an on-line interview, blog post, etc.

    I probably should sent a quick email when I enjoy an author's work. I'm just afraid I might come off as a stalker/crazy fangirl. :)

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  14. Leslie - Nod, I agree with you, Leslie... However, it seems from the comments that authors probably like receive our emails. Perhaps I should start trying... :P

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  15. Hi Nath
    In your reply to Wendy, you pondered whether authors read all their fan mail. After I read Dream A Little Dream, I emailed SEP.
    I got this reply:
    So glad you've discovered my books, Mary!
    SEP
    I have personally read your e-mail. I promise! That said, I'm getting so much correspondence that, unfortunately, I've finally had to resort to
    sending a general response.

    A form email!- who'd a thought.
    I didn't expect a reply. She could have left it with the first sentence & I never would have known any different but she's honest.

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  16. Mary G - Hmmm, interesting :) LOL, I guess it comes to a point where they don't have a choice :) Better send a generic email than let the readers believe you didn't read the email, right? Also, yes, it's very honest, but at the same time, since it might not really respond to the content of the email, it's better to warn the readers... covering your behind :P

    Thanks for sharing, Mary G :)

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