Monday, May 12, 2008

Creating a Cozy World

The question I've been asked more than any other is, "What is a cozy mystery?"

More often than not, people mistake cozies for their grittier siblings--suspense and thrillers. Fortunately for fans of Christie, Doyle, and Keene, Barbour Publishing has recognized the lack and begun providing true cozy mysteries to eager readers through its new line, Heartsong Presents: Mysteries. But how to get the word out? How do we, authors and lovers of pure cozy mystery, make the public aware of this amiable alternative to edge-of-your-seat, high-crime drama?

Part of my plan for introducing readers to the cozy genre is simply by spreading the word, one reader at a time. Listed below are some tricks and trips for making sure YOUR friends learn to love cozies as much as you do.

1. Schedule blog tours. Readers love getting to know authors, so the more personal you can be, the more willing they are to read your work.

2. Order promotional items like bookmarks, postcards, knick-knacks, etc. Have them handy for giveaways, contest prizes, and speaking engagements.

3. Bulk mailings--Got a long Christmas card list? Put your postage to good use and mail postcards to people you normally send Christmas cards to. They'll appreciate the contact, and you'll have help spreading the word about your newest cozy mystery.

4. Enlist family and friends. Give them a free book along with a few business cards and bookmarks for them to give out. Include ordering information on the back of the business cards.

5. Donate books to public libraries, schools, and churches.

6. Send a bulk email to everyone in your address book announcing the release of your book, along with ordering information.

7. Volunteer to judge contests. Get your name out there while you help new and aspiring authors hone their craft.

8. Create a book trailer and link it to your website or blog.

9. Write a press release to go out to all the local newspapers, radio stations, and tv stations.

10. Schedule booksignings

11. Contact local libraries for booksignings and promotions

Can you add to this list? How are you helping spread the word about your favorite genre?


NancyMehl said...

Great ideas!

Can I hire you???? LOL!


Elizabeth Ludwig said...

(laughing) Sure, Nancy...but my rate would be at least free book a year for the next fifty years. Sound good?? :-)

Mary Connealy said...

I belong to two cozy mystery yahoo groups, there are some other Barbour authors on it too.

Ausjenny said...

Im a reader and love these books.
I have asked nancy for an interview
But would love to interview other cozy mystery authors on my blog to promote these books. I too will be donating my books as i read them to our local library.

Oh I also love how its easy to join up to the club for international readers (except the phone call i made at 11.30pm)
I have tried to sign up for other books and been told i have to pay up front for a year.
Here i pay by the shipment on credit card.

My offer stands for any interviews.
just click my name and it will give you my blog info and email adress

Elizabeth Ludwig said...

Great suggestion, Mary! I completely forgot about joining groups where people read and enjoy cozy mysteries. You can spread the word about your own novels and see what others are reading/writing as well.

Elizabeth Ludwig said...

Awesome, ausjenny! Thank you for your willingness to hold blog tours. I'll spread your link around.

Amy said...

It's possible to join internationally? How much is the shipping?

Ausjenny said...

here is the email i got

Thank you for your interest in Heartsong Mysteries. The price for a foreign club shipments is $16.99 This price does include shipping.

I have an email address to send to if you need it just email me a ausjenny (at) gmail (dot) com

with the dollar doing so well (aussie) its around $18 aussie dollars and i got 4 free.
so i figure its good value.

Mary Connealy said...

I read this about cozy mysteries and liked it.

Cozy Mystery Article

Ausjenny said...

Thanks Mary wonderful article.

Also Lynette Sowell can you email me on ausjenny (at)
i got your message but cant find a contact address.

Oh and im excited I got my second shipment today.
I just have 3 books I have to read then I can read more! (and one of the 3 im struggling with.)

Deena said...

Offering to post reviews and promotional information on my blog:-)