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Why Don’t Authors Build Online Communities Around Their Books?

ilghtningIt’s no secret I want to make a lifelong career out of writing books, but I think in this whole crazy day and age writing your story just isn’t enough.

I don’t understand why more authors/publishing companies, etc. aren’t trying to build up entire online communities around a series of stories. It wouldn’t be that much work, and community building is fun. You get to REALLY know your characters and explore all their inner workings–it’s like doing all that beginning character building… but online.

I found this site the other day: The Amanda Project, and was impressed. They are almost doing what I am talking about, making their characters and the world they live in come alive on the internet, but I still want to see more!

If I were to develop an online community around Sketch McGee, it would be all about superheroes. YA readers could log into my website and create their own alternative secret identity. They could become that villain or hero and write stories of their own. I would even offer contests–the best characters getting to make cameos in my series. I have so many ideas for this and am so frustrated that more authors out there aren’t making this happen. Their characters need to frequent blog fansites, facebook pages, drop by on people’s twitters, etc.

There’s no reason these fictional characters can’t come to life on the internet, and I want to see more of it!

Anna Serra i Vidal

Monday 10th of August 2009

I read your post this morning and already commented but tonight I found a project that's starting its buzz on the net, and had to share. Not sure if you know it, but there it is: The Amanda Project http://www.amandaproject.com

Some are working on communities. But maybe it's more a matter of publishing houses putting the money than authors on their own. :) .-= Anna Serra i Vidal´s last blog ..Tímido despunte del 2.0. =-.

debbie

Monday 10th of August 2009

You do have such great ideas! I love the idea of them coming to life on the internet. .-= debbie´s last blog ..How I Spent my Weekend =-.

Gargantua

Monday 10th of August 2009

I would think another issue that might worry authors would be plagarism. If you put a lot of info regarding your characters on the web, it makes it easier for someone to rip you off.

There is also the issue of fanfiction. Opening a community site is definitely begging for fanfiction, and not all authors like the idea. .-= Gargantua´s last blog ..Review: Dead and Breakfast (2004) =-.

Anna Serra i Vidal

Monday 10th of August 2009

Great idea yes! You can start softly if you don't got the money. A free blog, a page on Facebook, Twitter account... all these are no money at all. Then the web could start slow with links to all other places and just wait to get some money and invest it on marketing (a nice website!)

Would love to get into your superheroes community Jamie!

Kelly Lininger

Monday 10th of August 2009

Great idea! Love, Kelly .-= Kelly Lininger´s last blog ..My Daughter Cinderella =-.