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    Romance Authors Have Been Doing It For Years by Marisa O’Neill
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  • Published: May 28th, 2009

Our first day at the BEA (Book Expo America) and Maria and I were amazed at the number of seminars devoted to social media, social networking sites and viral marketing. We thought we’d be learning a slew of new things and be able to discuss what’s up and what’s next. Unfortunately many of the seminars were presented by advertisers offering services for the publishing industry. In other words their seminars were all a guise to get you to buy products. Very disappointing to say the least. But what was really amazing was how many people in the audience were paying attention and extremely interested in what these people had to offer. Almost all the seminars we attended were about how to use the internet to get people to buy books through the phenomenon of word of mouth that the internet provides.

What was even more interesting was that so many of the ideas for getting the word out about a book are things that authors, bloggers and readers in the romance community have been doing for years. They touted the wonders of Facebook, the power of Twitter, the necessity for a web-site and the success of blogging. Yet, many of the attendees were taking copious notes and asking lots of questions. Questions that ranged from “How often should I post a new blog?” to “What applications can I use on my Facebook page?”

Romance authors are already savvy  on how to use the power of the internet. They blog, they twitter, they Facebook, they have websites and guest blog on romance sites as well as post to many of the blogs on the web. They have established an intimate connection and relationship with readers. They know how to use the web and they know the true power of ‘word of mouth’.   It made me want to stand up and say – ‘hey you all, check out some romance author websites and romance blogs and you’ll see the true power of how the internet can bring together a group of people from different backgrounds to share a common interest. We discuss, argue, we agree to disagree, debate, discover, exchange ideas, and yes, we are talking about books, the people who read them, the people who buy them and the people who write them. We’ve been doing it for years.

12 Responses to “Romance Authors Have Been Doing It For Years by Marisa O’Neill”

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  1. Maria Lokken
    on May 28th, 2009
    @ 9:34 pm

    Amen Sister!

  2. Gannon
    on May 28th, 2009
    @ 9:57 pm

    You said it! The romance industry rocks!! 🙂

  3. Pam P
    on May 28th, 2009
    @ 11:56 pm

    Here, here!

  4. Anna Campbell
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 12:25 am

    Maria, it always shocks me that this counts as ‘information’. I was published in 2006 and believe me, internet networking was alive and well then for the romance community. I actually think it’s great that we interact with our readers – I really enjoy talking to people about books, and not just mine!

  5. Stacy ~
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 6:37 am

    Yeah, we’ve always been ahead of the game. I think I started out on the internet in ’97 or ’99, (or was it ’01?) and when I first joined the romance community, it was through the Yahoo groups. From there, everything just exploded. There were so many avenues to “talk” to writers and other readers. It’s evolved to all the channels you’ve mentioned – FB, MySpace, Twitter, blogs, etc., and people can even do these things on their phones these days. I think it’s because the romance community is so much about people, and we’re essentially a close-knit group, so it makes sense that we are right there with technology. Plus, the romance community has a lot of savvy, smart cookies. So it’s no surprise to me.

  6. Laura
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 10:21 am

    I know I am a little late in putting my two cents in, but I have to. I have to confess my deepest, darkest secret. I NEVER READ ANY ONE BUT DODD, LINDSEY AND McNAUGHT, until I started scanning this sight. It never, and I mean never occured to me to even stray a bit from my three faves. Now, I must admit, I am hooked on oh so many more authors, and it’s because of word of mouth and this community of romance readers. It has opened up so much more for me, and I am one extremely grateful women for it. So maybe Maria and Marisa should have done a seminar. I think you would have alot to share.

  7. Maria Lokken
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 10:49 am

    Thanks for your two cents Laura – it was worth a million.

  8. Anna Campbell
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 3:53 pm

    Maria and Marisa, I would love to go to a seminar you girls do! Any chance at a place near me? 😉

  9. Maria Lokken
    on May 29th, 2009
    @ 9:25 pm

    Anna – the very next time we plan a trip to your hemisphere, we will absolutely contact you at the exact moment we are booking the ticket.

    A seminar – geez, Marisa and I have lots to say – we’ll let you when someone wants to hear our 2 cents in a public forum.

  10. Joanie T
    on May 31st, 2009
    @ 7:27 pm

    Any seminars on the value of Golden Roosters?


    Nah, he’s one of a kind and…he’s ours *BEG*

  11. Joanie T
    on May 31st, 2009
    @ 7:28 pm

    BTW, LOVE the new look of RNTV!

  12. Marisa
    on May 31st, 2009
    @ 9:33 pm

    Joanie – A seminar on the Golden Rooster? Now that’s a seminar I would have definitely enjoyed.

    Glad you like the new look. It’s almost like getting a new wardrobe.

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