In recent years, Facebook has severely limited the amount of interaction authors can have with their readers. I maintain a profile page on Facebook as well as a "Business Page," which is my fan page. However, Facebook has severely limited my ability to reach and interact with my fans these days - those people who "Liked" the page, presumably to get updates from me, see what I post about, and interact with me - unless I wish to pay to have the posts seen. Unless you click "like" on every post I post (and there's only a 1 in 10 chances you will), and interact with the post as soon as it hits your Facebook newsfeed, chances are very good you won't be seeing my next post, or the next.
In order to get around this algorithm, many authors have started fan groups on Facebook. My Facebook group started when a reader made a comment to me over a year ago that she would love to discuss my books with other readers on my business page, but was afraid to make comments because of spoilers, and asked if there was a private place where she could openly talk about the books. So, that's how my group BETWEEN THE LINES WITH PEGGY L HENDERSON got started. It is a closed group, meaning that only members of the group can see and post to the group.
I love my Facebook group! It's the place I go to every day to talk to my readers. We discuss anything from the weather, to places we've been and would like to visit, and everything in between. We try and keep it focused mainly on books, and my books in particular, since that's what the group was set up for in the first place. I share tidbits about what the characters I currently am writing about have been doing, my joys and frustrations with the characters, exclusive teasers and cover reveals, and lots of other things I don't talk about on my public page.
We might delve into backstory that never makes it into any of my books, and a favorite topic is always the Book Boyfriends. Everyone has their favorite, and it can sometimes turn into a mud slinging contest (always in good fun and with humor).
I love this interaction, because, as a writer, my job is rather lonely. I live in my head each day, trying to bring these characters to life, and I'm humbled and honored that there are fans who treat these characters as "real people," just as I do. I can ask my readers for opinions, I do exclusive contests and giveaways, and am about to do my first "virtual book signing."
From my group, two books have been born - Yellowstone Promise (which started as an idea one of my beta readers had. She wanted to know what would happen if Daniel, Aimee, Chase and Sarah could go to the future together. I gave it some thought, tossed in Dan and Jana for good measure, and took it from there), and Yellowstone Homecoming. One fan asked me to please write a story about Matthew Osborne, whom we've met very briefly in Yellowstone Redemption, and also as a young boy in Yellowstone Christmas. If you'll recall, he was also the reason for the events that transpired in Yellowstone Deception.
So, if you'd like to connect on a more active level than simply reading this blog, and have a Facebook account, consider joining my group. I have two administrators who approve each request to join. We don't want spammers or "fake accounts" in the group, and my admins do their best to make sure only "real" and legitimate people get approved.
I hope to see you there!
To join, go here: Facebook Group