Big arguments (um, discussions) on several groups I read concerning what's "best" for authors looking to sell their work: Facebook, MySpace, Crimespace, Twitter, etc.

I guess I have it wrong, because I don't necessarily join a group to sell books. Yes, I would like it if people everywhere bought my books, but I enjoy the hour I spend each morning reading comments, learning what others do and don't recommend, and writing my own admittedly idiosyncratic observations. Some sites connect me with people in the business. Others connect me with "real" contacts, usually students I taught who have moved on to other things.

I take no interest in whether or not anyone goes out to buy my book because of something I said online or the mere fact of my presence here. I just enjoy the "socialness" of this sort of networking. If it leads me somewhere, that's nice. If it doesn't, I'll just enjoy sharing joys, gripes, opinions, and pictures.

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Comment by Donna Carrick on August 30, 2009 at 8:18am
It's always a pleasure to read what others are up to and what does and doesn't work for them. Who but a fellow-writer would really understand what we are up against? So yes, I'll express my opinions, and I may not always agree with everyone on the subject of marketing or anything else, but I always have the greatest respect for my fellow scribes, and you often make me laugh, which is a delight!

Especially B.R. -- yes, you, you have a wonderful wit!
Comment by I. J. Parker on August 29, 2009 at 12:45am
Mmm. That should be "testifies."
Comment by I. J. Parker on August 28, 2009 at 7:56am
Well, I suppose the number of my daily posts testify to the fact that I love it here. The company is excellent.
Comment by Pepper Smith on August 28, 2009 at 6:31am
I've never been all that convinced that social networking sites are wonderful tools for promoting books--in fact, I tend to ignore people who do nothing but hawk their books or beg for votes in whatever the contest of the day is. I'm more interested in looking for someone's books if I've read enough of their posts online to think they might have written fiction I'd be interested in reading.

So, yeah, this is more for the sake of connecting with other authors and seeing what's going on in the world of publishing and crime fiction, and, oh, if you'd like to read my books, that's fine too. But I'm not going to get in your face about it.
Comment by Peg Herring on August 28, 2009 at 5:36am
I like yams...with brown sugar and butter, of course.
Comment by Jon Loomis on August 28, 2009 at 5:26am
If anything, I'd guess that my on-line presence here is a wash at best in terms of selling books--I've probably offended and annoyed at least as many people as I've amused. But I've learned a lot about what to expect as an author from these forum conversations, and I've enjoyed some of our knock-down drag-outs a good deal--and of course it's always fun twitting Jude about this or that. Sites like this are also good for bragging--it's nice to be able to post a bit of good news and have people respond with a virtual pat on the back. That said, if I had to rely on Facebook or crimespace to sell books, I'd be well and truly screwed. I also wouldn't feel that I could be myself online, and I'm terrible at editing my online persona to make it more palatable to the easily offended. Not a game I'm interested in playing, frankly. I yam what I yam, as Popeye said.
Comment by B.R.Stateham on August 28, 2009 at 4:48am
Thanks I.J.----and I will say that it was in here I found your books (and enjoy the heck out of them). As I found others.
Comment by I. J. Parker on August 28, 2009 at 4:38am
You are a treasure, B.R.
Comment by B.R.Stateham on August 28, 2009 at 3:49am
For the most part, I'm with you on this one, Peg. Sure, I mention what new stuff I have out there, but being here was never a calculated effort to sell books. At least. . . not directly. I would be flattered if someone thought my cryptic wit and droll humor (two very controversial traits I may or may not have) was sufficient enough for interested parties to go hunt up my books. But I'm not banking on it.

I do like the conversations in here. And the arguements. . for the most part.

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