Cathryn Fox is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. She writes sexy contemporary romance, erotica, and hot paranormal romance. New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster describes Cathryn’s books as, “sizzling, irresistible and wonderful”. USA Today bestselling author Julianne MacLean calls Cathryn, “The next Queen of Steamy Romance.” National bestselling author Sylvia Day says, “A Cathryn Fox book is a must-read great escape!”
Cathryn is our guest today and she’s got a lot to say about what it takes to be a bestselling author!
What do you love about being an author?
I honestly love being able to write down the stories that are in my head. I also love the flexibility of my job. I was able to be home with the kids when they were young, and my husband is a shift worker, so if he’s off during the week, I can take a day off and just make up for it on the weekend.
Tell us the backstory of how you hit the bestseller lists – for which book (s)?
I’ve been on the USA Today list three times, and New York Times Twice, and let me say, the second and third times are just as exciting as the first. My book, Torn Between Two Brothers was in the Love in Disguise boxed set and hit USA Today. Yours To Take, was in Unraveled and hit USA Today AND New York times, and in July, Torn Between Two Brothers hit both lists in the Spice Boxed set.
How long have you been writing and how long did it take you to get on a bestseller list?
I’ve been writing full time since 2000. I hit my first big bestsellers list last year with my Pleasure Games Trilogy, a special three-book bundle for Costco and Walmart! I hit The Globe and Mail top ten!
How much time do you spend on social media every day? And what are some of the things that you do on your social media sites to engage with readers and fans?
I am on facebook and twitter everyday. I would say for about an hour. In an effort to engage readers, I post pictures of numerous things, such as the deer who are currently eating all my fruit trees, the fire pit we just put in, the sailboat in the harbor near the boardwalk I walk in the evenings. I think readers want to hear about the ‘authors’ not just the books. I also recently started FOXY FICTION, it’s a facebook street team where I give sneak peaks, share excerpts, deleted scenes and will soon hold a contest where the reader can get THEIR name in my book. I’m seeking new members, so if any of your readers out there are interested in hanging out with me, please come by!
What if an author is starting out in social media – on facebook and twitter etc…or what if they haven’t gotten much buzz – what are some things an author can do to create a buzz or get more followers?
There are many facebook groups that host promotional parties. Definitely try to get involved. It’s great for exposure, especially when it’s a multi-author party. During your time slot offer incentives, perhaps a draw for a free ebook, to all those who liked your facebook author page, joined your street team, or newsletter. Other facebook places offer page takeovers and this way you get a chance to interact with their readers. I will be taking part in the Twin Sisters Rockin Book Reviews page takeover on the 18th of August 7-9 Eastern. If anyone out there is interested to see how it’s run, please stop by.
Based on your own experience, do you think it’s a good idea for an author to invest in his or her own promotional and marketing budget? If so – what are some of the important things that an author should consider?
Marketing is so important today, especially if you are indie publishing. Without a publishing house behind you, everything is left in the author’s hands. What good is it to write a book, put it out there, only for no one to know about it? It doesn’t always have to be expensive. (especially since most things can be done digitally today!) You can reach out to goodreads reviewers and give them an advanced copy of your book to generate early reviews. You can ask friends to tweet or post on facebook for you. You can also purchase some fairly inexpensive ad space at places like Storyfinds, Ereadernews Today, Digital Book Today, Kindle Fire Department, Romance Reads, Fresh Fiction. If you have a higher budget you can reach out to marketing and public relations specialists like InkslingerPR.
Do you do brick and mortar book tours? If so, do you arrange them on your own or do you go through your publisher or an agency? Why are book tours still important in today’s huge e-book market?
I have done a few locally that were arranged on my own. I think it’s important to get out there and make that face-face connection with readers. During a tour you can also sell your book digitally, so it doesn’t matter if the reader likes print book or ebook, they can still walk away with your shiny new book.
Do you do online book tours? If so, do you go through agencies or arrange them on your own? What do you like about online book tours?
I’ve done online blog tours and they were arranged by both me, for my indie books, and my publisher for my traditional books. Goddess Fish is who I used. I enjoy it because I can do either, questions and answers, or write a blog post on a topic of my choice. My work/name gets put in front of many, many readers.
What do you think it takes to become a bestselling author?
Hard work, dedication, drive, ambition, knowledge of the industry, and a little bit of luck! It also takes a good book, good cover and a great support group behind the scenes who is willing to read and reread that book until it’s perfect!
A great writer or a good book doesn’t necessarily translate to hitting a bestseller list. What do you think the bestselling authors do differently than authors who don’t sell as well?
You are right. I’ve read lots of excellent books that have not hit bestseller lists. I think bestsellers study the market, are always evaluating the changes in the industry and are willing to change with it. I also believe they are prepared to try new things, even at the risk of failing.
Thank you for stopping by!
Thank you for having me!