Maybe you'll call me a late bloomer, or maybe you've never heard of it, but the website / social media site Goodreads is a terrific tool for readers. Today I wrote a review of the book in the photo, "The Excellent Lombards" by Jane Hamilton. I also just became a Goodreads Author and have created a profile there.
Several years ago, when the online farm game was popular and Facebook friends tried giving me goats or cattle, nudging me to join them with a cyberfarm, a loved one became a big fan.
When I failed to accept her livestock or produce, or have anything to do with a fictitious property, I finally told her that I don’t do games on social media. Having a beautifully run farm in cyberspace is one thing, but I had my hands full maintaining my real home and life.
She told me that was fine because – here’s the kicker--she got points for my deteriorating online farm.
I was amazed by the comment, and that it was possible for me to have my name attached to a farm she could see in cyberspace. And, that the farm was apparently in sad shape because I ignored it.
I thought of that when Goodreads came on my radar in a big way. I knew about the online interactive reading resource. I even knew that my first book had been mentioned and rated on there by some folks, although I had done nothing to put it there.
But because of, I don’t know—neglect, because I was busy maintaining a blog, updating a website, posting to Facebook author and personal pages, reading others’ blogs, emailing friends—as well as busy living my walking-around life, I hadn’t given Goodreads much thought and no attention.
Then all at once, I was told of two close friends’ affinity for Goodreads, and separately, learned that two people had newly posted nice reviews of my second book.
So I checked it out and was both delighted and horrified.
The delight came in the reviews and ratings newly posted, and that a dear friend’s daughter, an avid reader and busy career woman, had taken the time to read both my books and give them high marks.
The horror came in seeing that my books seemed to be fending for themselves with no help from their “farmer,” me. My poor second book didn’t even have a photo of its cover. There was no author page.
With all the avid readers who use Goodreads in all kinds of ways to connect with books, get recommendations for what to read, speak with other readers and many other things of which I haven’t begun to tap into, I was crazy to have ignored the site.
So … I set about improving things. I applied to become a Goodreads author, and was accepted! Then I went about building a profile and adding this and that. Goodreads could be addictive.
There’s still much I need to learn about this very cool site, this world really, where writers and readers meet and greet and grade.
As with the Amazon system, anyone can comment on my books favorably or not. Or they can curse me with faint praise. Or ignore me. All of that happens. It goes with the territory.
Odd things happen when anyone can comment on or review a book. Once, an Amazon reviewer said she enjoyed my first book and then referred to the murder that took place inside its pages. What? There was no murder in my book. Although I reported the inaccurate review, at least she gave my book five stars, causing me not to worry about it too much.
Another reader trashed my first book, saying she was returning to her usual smut. I don’t know what she expected in a women’s Christian fiction genre, but apparently, with a 1 rating, she didn’t get it.
It’s all part of putting myself out there before the public and what I signed on for when I published both books.
That said, if you are of a mind to do such a thing, I welcome connecting with you in the Goodreads world. I would love it if you consider rating my books, reviewing them, (gulp!) or indicating that you might like to read them. You can follow me if you want! You can find me under Goodreads author Donna Cronk, Sweetland of Liberty Bed & Breakfast or That Sweet Place: At Home in the Heartland.
If you use Goodreads, would you be so kind to share your thoughts and uses for the site here in the comments or private Messenger me on Facebook on the Donna Cronk page?
Trying to navigate the various social media sites and keep up with them are works in progress.
Welcome to my little piece of real estate over at Goodreads. I hope the pasture is green.
I’m just learning the ropes over there. But I’m glad I got out the toolbox and started mending the fence and caring for the crop. We’ll see what kind of harvest may come or at least have fun trying.