Just as the concept and definition of a book has changed dramatically due to recent technology, so have the concepts of being an author and a reader. It’s not uncommon to be Facebook friends with a famous author or to enjoy back and forth exchanges on Twitter with someone in a favorite genre. But the personalized connection via technology is about to get a whole lot closer.
Romance Writers of America (RWA) is hosting a series of live video events with the finalists for this year’s RITA awards, allowing fans the opportunity to interact with their favorite award-nominated romance authors. Much like Spreecast or Google Hangout, Shindig allows a virtually unlimited number of participants to spend some time interacting through its platform.
While video events are not very new, this attention to the fans is a growing movement. And in the case of many authors, they are the driving force behind getting to meet the readers.
When GoodEReader hosted a live online ebook signing with bestselling romance author HP Mallory, the event lasted well over an hour, giving the signing attendees ample time to talk with Mallory. At one point, an astounded fan typed in the chat box, “This is incredible. I feel like I’m right there in your living room.” Mallory smiled, looked around, and said, “You are in my living room!”
This personal interaction is especially important for indie authors who rely on their readers’ to spread the word about great new books, and many self-published authors have benefited from making a personal-level of accessibility a part of their promotion strategies.
According to a press release from RWA: “The series kicks off April 11 at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PDT with RITA finalists in the Contemporary Single Title Romance category: Barbara Freethy, Barbara Hannay, Ruthie Knox, Kim Law, Roni Loren, Jill Shalvis, and Roxanne St. Claire.
To view a full schedule and to RSVP, please visit http://www.rwa.org/RITAchat. Follow RWA on Twitter @romancewriters (#RITAchat hashtag) and Shindig on Twitter at @ShindigEvents during the chats.”