I always forget to blog about this even though it is a tip which I pass on to patrons and students all of the time. And it is one which never fails to make me look like a reading superhero.
We all have those patrons who have a handful of favorite authors from which they will not stray, no matter how much we suggest other authors to them. You know the ones. They say things like, "I have read everything you have here," even though you have thousands of books which they have never opened. And you know you have the exactly perfect readalike option for them; it is an author who others whom like said author have loved; it is a best-seller; etc.... They still will NOT try something else.
For these patrons, and others who have absolute favorite authors, I have found success in directing them to the blogs, Facebook pages, and/or Twitter accounts of their favorite authors. Some even have Goodreads or Shelfari Accounts too. Most love for fans to ask to follow them on these book social networking sites; in fact, many will contact you first if they see you have their books or ones like theirs already on your shelf. Check out my friends on Shelfari. There are a few authors there.
Authors, especially successful ones, love to promote other authors. They want you to read. The more you read the better it is for all of them. So on their personal social media pages they will talk about their favorite authors, new authors who they are excited about, and backlist gems they love.
To get started, simply Google the author in question and go to his or her homepage. From there you will find links to any and all places where the author resides online. It is really easy, but not an option that always immediately comes to mind as you busy helping a cranky patron.
So, take those stubborn patrons and show them how to follow what their favorite authors are reading and suggesting to their fans. Your patrons will be ecstatic, and will may just finally be willing to try something different. It may be the exact same title or author you have been trying to get said patron to try for months without success, but when it comes direct from the author's "mouth," your patron will probably finally take the plunge, and you will still be the hero.
Try it out and let me know how it goes.
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