Changes for the Home Stretch

One of the pieces of advice I received when I started shopping THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER to different publishers was to make sure I had a blog. At the time, another blog of mine already existed, but it was much more personal and family-oriented in nature. So, I started this blog with the idea that it would serve as my “author” blog.

Once I had the blog up and running, the next piece of advice I received was that I needed to make sure that I blogged on a regular basis. If I went too long between entries, the blog would cease to be effective. Another article I read also suggested that not only should I be active, but I should be predictably active. The idea is that a blog will attract regular readers much more readily if they can know on a regular basis when they should expect new entries.

For about eight months now, I have tried to do this. To be honest, I’m not sure if anybody noticed but me. But I did it because it is an industry norm. Or so I’m told.

Well, the truth is, I have noticed its effectiveness.  When I started this blog, I was lucky if 15 to 20 people read an entry. Now, on average, a typical entry will get around 50 to 60 views on day one and anywhere from 20 to 30 in the next two days following. Numbers that are certainly not setting the world on fire, but pretty decent considering where I started.

Now, one thing I have noticed is that I have been pretty consistent about publishing a blog post on Monday. I haven’t been quite as consistent with blogging on Thursday (sometimes it slips to Friday and sometimes I have missed altogether), but I have noticed that my Monday posts are routinely more widely read than my Thursday or Friday posts. I don’t know why, but they are.

So, taking into account the numbers and the fact that I am running out of things to say, moving forward, I am going to blog each Monday and that will probably be it. (I fully understand that most people’s response will be, “What is he talking about? Does he honestly think we care when he posts stuff? What kind of ego driven maniac are dealing with here?”)

The reason I am putting this out there (to be completely frank about the marketing strategy I am trying to employ) is to hopefully maximize my efforts with those who have become somewhat regular readers. If they know when to expect something, they will be less likely to miss it. Not every post between now and August will be book related, but the reason this is important is that when they are book related, I am then dependent on those regular readers to help me disseminate some of the more “Major Announcement” kind of things that will be coming in the next few weeks as the release for THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER is now a mere three months away.

What kind of announcements? Well, the cover art should be done very shortly. A new look to the website that will more effectively promote the book will be up soon. Short previews of the novel itself will appear in some posts and hopefully announcements of positive reviews (that’s a big assumption, I know) will post here as well.

But here is my huge request. If you are a friend, family member or complete stranger who is marginally excited for the release of THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER, I really need your help in the coming months. I realize these requests are unfair as they are favors I will likely never be able to repay. But I ask because as anybody who is trying to make their dream a reality in this new world of social media knows: one extra share or one extra like can be the difference of something going viral or something going stagnant. So here are my requests.

1. Share and like posts that deal with “major” announcements regarding THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER.

2. Invite people to “like” my author page, preferably more than once. (Invite more than once, not like)

3. Hopefully some author signings will be announced. If you are one of those people who doesn’t like to pre-order things or distrusts putting your credit card on the internet and happens to live in one of those areas where a signing is announced, please (yes, I have fully reached begging mode here) take the opportunity to visit that store where the signing is scheduled and request a copy be ordered for you ahead of the book’s release. Currently, only one is scheduled for sure and that is the book’s release party at Bookworms Bookstore in Thatcher, AZ.

4. If you live in a state other than Arizona or Utah, I’m probably not gonna be signing anywhere near you. If you have plans to purchase the book, please consider purchasing the book now as a pre-0rder from Amazon.com. You can do so by clicking here.  Pre-order numbers affect the efforts in marketing the book by the publisher as well as bookstores that will consider stocking a book.

If you are a person who hates to be “that guy” or “that girl” who pushes things on their friends and family, I understand. If you would prefer to not “like” every post or not suggest people follow my page, I get it. I won’t let my kids sell their latest PTO stuff door to door because I don’t want my neighbors to feel pressured. I totally understand. But if you think you might be buying this book, this last request is the request that matters most. If you do pre-order it, whether it be through a bookstore or on-line, I thank you more than I can express. It means a great deal to me.  Really, Thank You.

Lastly, thank you to everyone who has been so supportive. I hope when the final product lands in your hands you aren’t extremely let down. If you have followed this blog regularly, then you probably have a good idea of what to expect from the writing. Except now there will be a story included. I can’t believe it is coming so quickly. Thanks again everybody, for all the support you’ve provided and for anything you may do going forward. You’re great.

For anyone hoping for a less pushy post, all I can offer is my latest post from last Thursday in case you missed it. (It wasn’t a Monday post, so it is likely that you did.)

THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER arrives August 13, 2013. Ryan Rapier the author’s facebook page can be found at www.facebook.com/ryanrapierauthor. As noted above, it can currently be pre-ordered on Amazon.com. Just think parents, it will be here just in time for you to enjoy as you send your kids back to school.

 

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Why I Admire A Man So Many People Hate

I have articulated my frustration with politics many times before. I will not be doing so again right now. But one of my biggest goals when it comes to politics is to keep it from getting personal. I believe our desire to take political discourse into the realms of the personal is why the climate in politics today is so toxic and why no problem is getting addressed in our country.

For those reasons I have defended President Obama as a person. I believe there is a great deal of good in the man. I may not agree with all he stands for and advocates, but I don’t believe politics is what makes a person.

Along those same lines, I came across this article today. I know many liberals and democrats who despise President George W. Bush. And I mean despise him. I’ve never understood it. There were things I disagreed with him on when it comes to politics, but when he spoke or made appearances, I always saw a good man doing his best. Call me naive, but that is what I saw. So it was heartening to see that I was not alone and that this high ranking official in the Clinton administration had many of the same feelings about George W. Bush that I always did. And that he could back up those feelings with personal experiences. So, because I believe it is important to accentuate the positive and raise our discourse, I am linking to this article below. Please take the time to read it. Because this is the type of politics I believe our Savior would have us practice.

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/04/25/democrat-reveals-3-things-liberals-dont-get-about-george-w-bush/

Meanwhile, only three and half months until THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER hits bookstores and mailboxes. If you haven’t taken the opportunity to pre-order it, today’s as good a day as any. You can order at Amazon.com by clicking here. Or you can request a copy be ordered for you at Bookworms Bookstore in Thatcher, AZ, or any bookstore that handles LDS books. Simply walk in and ask to be on the list for THE RELUCTANT BLOGGER, by Ryan Rapier from Cedar Fort Publishing. Your support is appreciated.

One other note; my friend, Brad Hull, of Due West has a request. He and the rest of the band are striking out on their own and could use your help. I would explain it here, but they do a much better job, so to hear what Due West is asking, please follow the link below. If you haven’t heard a Due West song, you are missing out. In today’s world of country music, their amazing harmonies are a rare commodity. Here’s hoping their new venture works out and we hear new Due West music on the radio real soon.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/duewest/due-west-new-music-project?ref=live