For years I've wondered about blog tours, but every time I thought about doing one, I came up against a solid wall of my own ignorance. Many and many a time I've asked author friends about them, but I never even understood the answers, I'd try to think about it and it would all slide over the surface of my mind without sinking in.
Today, I decided I'd finally crack it. I've got two books coming up, both related to each other - the second edition of Grammar Without Tears, and its companion volume, Fifty Shades of Grammar. I'll be documenting the process as I go, for your edification and entertainment.
The first thing, I think, is to get my hosts on board. I'm guessing I will need at least 10 to 12 stops on my tour, and really the more the better as the point is to promote my books. As to content, there seem to me to be three main possibilities with a stop on a blog tour. These are the interview, the guest post and the release announcement. With this in mind, I decided to start by getting a list of blogs that would host me with one of these things.
I posted on Facebook asking people to do this, and within a couple of hours I had four people offering to host me on six blogs. I think I need more than this, but it's early days yet. I set up an Excel spreadsheet - it wouldn't be me if there were no spreadsheet.
The columns in my spreadsheet are: Host (the name of the person), Blog (the name of the blog), Content (at present this holds the host's preference for those who have expressed a preference, but closer to the time I'll be filling in the blanks), and Date.
The plan is that once I've got a list of enough blogs, and a firmer release date, I'll fill in all the blanks so that I have a detailed plan of what is going where when, and this will drive any work I have to do to write guest posts, interviews and so on. My aim is to get the materials to my hosts at least a week before they need it, just as a small courtesy.
It occurs to me that my hosts may also have preferences about dates, so it's possible another column may be required, but I can add to the spreadsheet as things develop.
I've still only got 7 blogs for the tour, so I post in one of the Facebook Writers Groups - Australian Writers Rock!!!
I now have eight blogs on my list, and I think this is enough for my first attempt at a blog tour. With this in place, the first step in my plan is complete. Next, I will be constructing the detailed plan, with dates, content required, and so on.
| The big new edition of GWT, with its companion volume Fifty Shades of Grammar,|
will be the subject of my blog tour. It is available from AMAZON in paperback only; the ebook is the tiny first edition.