Take a Holiday in a Story

This was supposed to be:

How to Find a Reader …

And it started like this:

Ooooooh! BookClubs – love bookclubs … which one?

There are bookclubs out there, and places readers can apply to get pre-published books as long as they do a review. There are places readers can go to find books published by that publisher (and affiliates).

It’s all so hard, though, to rummage through all the stuff to get to a book that looks like one I’d like to read …

Where can I go, as a reader, to find a book by scrolling through a simplified list based on my preferences?

There’s the Silver Empire book club starting up – which looks really interesting … but is it only their books? I like the idea, it could save me time and effort when looking for a good read – yes, I read; I read lots of books, fiction, non-fiction, blue-prints, magazines, anthologies, planning documents, future-gaming docs, programming process docs … I read a lot (a slight obsession, one I’m happy to live with).

I like to read, and I like to write, but …

What if I want to submit my books to a book club list?

Do I need to start my own book club to get my books on the bookclub lists?

I don’t want to pay a company to get me reviews, I want readers to read my books, and I want to read books with stories I like to read.

Yes, I like my books, but I’ve already read them … and I know the ending. Where can I put my books so others can find and read them?

When I look for books to read, where do I go? I want books new to me, interesting, fresh stories; interesting, fresh writers. Where do I find them without wading through so much other stuff that I give up and go back to an old favourite?

Maybe I’ll start a ‘holiday program’ and link to a few authors on BookBub

well, we can’t get out and about at the moment, so why not see if this takes off?

It may come down to a PR slogan:

Take your holiday in a book, safe and cost-effective!

And you can holiday several times in one week, still cost-effective!

So, how do I create a bookclub holiday destination where we can choose to:

– battle monsters in a Sword & Sorcery,
– befriend aliens in a Light Sci-Fi First Contact, or
– meet real magic on the Urban Fantasy train


Thinking on it, and I wonder if it might be a better idea if I can talk someone else into doing this bookclub idea …

wanna have a shot?

Where to start?

Where is that tongue to stick in my cheek? Or should I just clamp down and clam up?

9 thoughts on “Take a Holiday in a Story

  1. As another avid reader, I’d love for someone to present me with a list of books I’ll love without my having to hunt for them. But you know what? I doubt that I could ever explain what kind of books I like, and why.
    I do have a system of sorts though. I collect authors, and if I like /their/ books, I have a fair idea that I’ll also like the books that they like. Not always, but most of the time. Not a perfect system, but I rarely find myself with absolutely …gah…nothing to read!?! -tears hair and panics-

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, that. Nothing to read is a nightmare. However, on my visits to places where people hang out and time is always a flexible thing with the actual appointment, I chat to them, ask questions, what they like to read, why they liked that one, what they look for in title, cover, blurb (they often don’t call it that!), and areas of interest.
      I don’t usually say I write, but I’m a reader first, and I learn something from each of these moments.
      I also read for research, fiction and non-fiction. Modern readers expect different story worlds and words to the readers of even 20 years ago!


      • I’m starting to recognize at a visceral level that what I consider to be good, innovative, exciting writing is no longer the norm. Or perhaps I never much liked what most people liked in the first place. Does that make me a snob? Elitist?
        I suspect that my likes and dislikes simply prove that I’m ‘old school’. Not a literati, but definitely wedded to a style of story telling that is probably called ‘classic’ these days.
        That said, I’m still finding awesome writers in my beloved sci-fi/fantasy. Hugh Howey is one, Martha Wells, Rachel Aaron and Kristine Kathryn Rusch are others. Rusch and Aaron started out as traditionally published and turned Indie. Howey and Wells started out as Indies and have now been picked up by the Big Five or Four or however many there are left.

        Howey’s Wool has over 15,000 reviews but the others have reviews in the low hundreds. I would give my right arm to be a Howey or a Rusch, but it’ll never happen so all I can do is be the best that I can be.

        I’ve really struggled with this for the last six months or so, but I’m slowly starting to understand that I either tell stories the way I think is good, or I don’t tell stories at all.

        As someone with a reasonably healthy ego, this realisation has been hard to accept. I want to be successful, and I want my stories to be remembered. But…’you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear’. I’m old school and I always will be.

        I just hope my Muse stops sulking and comes back. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t think it’s a matter of dichotomising between what you think is good or not telling stories at all, it’s about the readers who want to read that story – it’s about readability.
        There’s an old saying: good grammar does not a good story make; however, a good story can be ruined by bad grammar – because grammar isn’t the start of a story, it’s the end!
        Finding the path to those who love to read your stories is harder than writing, harder than learning how to write, harder than living to 200. It takes time and consistent placement until someone talks about it.
        Hugh Howey had one good story, in my view, and the others are only mediocre. That one good story won over enough people that they’ll read the mediocre stories because they understand the story now, they’re part of it.
        It’s not the reviews that count, in the long run – word of mouth is the best advertising of all. The secret to getting those lips speaking the words of your story … the journey of a thousand leagues starts with …
        I have a plan outlined in my will – if I die before any of the stories earn enough to donate the copyright to a charity (for animal welfare), they all get unpublished. I don’t want to live in posterity through my stories, I want my stories to live on their own.
        Impossible, of course. Maybe I should have ignored the world as I forged my way through it and just started writing from the get-go … although, the experiences I now have wouldn’t be there to draw on, would they?
        I’ll keep the writing as my obsession, the thing that brings me great emotional journeys, until the final journey beckons.
        Sorry, bit long-winded today.


      • It’s okay, Cage, I’ve been immersed in the Covid-19 developments, and my mood has been grim to say the least. I do want to leave my stories to posterity, probably in the vain hope that they’ll be rediscovered and enjoyed some time in the future. Yes, yes, I know. Shakespeare I ain’t. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Even Shakespeare isn’t what people seem to think. For a start, he didn’t write in acts, but the people who studied the works (many decades later, maybe a century or more) found it easier to deconstruct them by placing them as acts. Funny world.
        Who knows how people will be creative with what came before, how they think about ‘what the writer meant’ by something.


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