By C. Mansfield
There is a world only a few clicks away if you know where to look. A world of desire, love, and friendship. A place where you can share your passion for romance with others. This place is called Romancelandia. And if you are reading this, congratulations! You’ve found us. Now, let us show you around…
Welcome to Romancelandia
When you first discover your love of romance, it’s easy to buy whatever books cross your path. If the blurb sounds good, you buy it. Over time, you become more discerning and purposeful in your purchases. You grow to find tropes and authors you love because they resonate with something inside of you.
When we feel a connection with an author’s work, it’s only natural to feel drawn to their voice and the way they see the world. We want more of the world and characters they create and will do anything to have them. That’s why reader support is so critical to an author’s success. It helps our favorite authors create the works that we love.
There are a number of things we as proud citizens of Romancelandia can do to support these authors.
- Pre-order their books
Pre-orders are critical to the success of a book launch. All pre-orders get added to the first week’s total of sales. Due to many changes in the way top lists rank books, this might be the only way a romance author can make the list. If it’s an author on your auto-buy list, consider clicking that pre-order button when available.
- Review their books
Ask yourself honestly, how do you decide if you are going to read a book? Or decide to purchase anything these days? The chances are your decision relies heavily on how the product is reviewed. If you truly love a book, a simple rating and one word review goes a long way. Even if there were parts of the book you didn’t like, it’s still helpful. Maybe someone else will see your review and realize the book isn’t for them. It saves the author from having a potentially bad review. All reviews help in their own way. It also might alert another reader to a trope or plotline they enjoy, and you’ve helped the author gain a new reader!
- Support them through social media
Most of your favorite authors have some form of social media presence. Maybe it’s just an instagram account or maybe they have an entire Facebook group where they interact with their readers. Find your authors, follow them and like them. Every little bit makes a difference.
- Spread the word
Now that you are following your favorite authors on social media, you can share their posts about upcoming releases and book reveals. Tell your friends about them. Recommend them in other groups. Shout your love to the rooftops.
- Support them on Patreon
Many authors have created Patreon accounts to share special content and give their fans a chance to participate in the creation of their content. Katee Robert (Episodes #68) let her Patreon subscribers decide which villain would be the anti-hero in her next Wicked Villains series. And Piper Drake (Episodes #71 and #117), shares practical advice on how she maintains her writing schedule while working a highly demanding day job and recipes from her adventures in the kitchen. (Psst! The Wicked Wafflowers Club has a Patreon, too. If you want to support your favorite podcast, visit the page here.)
- Support the Community
The more you interact with people within the community of Romancelandia, the more you see the other ways we support each other. There are numerous fundraisers and campaigns for the causes that are so near and dear to us, like Romance for RAICES which raised over $23,000 last year for The Refugee and Immigration Center for Education and Legal Services or Romance for Literacy, which is currently raising money for ProLiteracy, an organization that promotes adult literacy.
Remember, you vote with your dollar. Be sure that the authors you support with your dollar are worthy of lt. The romance community is the most powerful community in publishing. With every dollar, you are shaping the future. Ask yourself if the books you’re reading reflect the world around you and the world you want to see? Does it reflect a world of diversity and empathy for those who are not like you? Does it elevate the voices of marginalized groups so that they may finally be heard? Consider the impact of the books you buy and the authors you support.
Next month, we will explore the people and places in Romancelandia we all long to see.