Hooked on a series? Stuck on book two of a trilogy that ends on a cliffhanger? (I’m talking about you, Patrick Carr.) Have a favorite author whose next book won’t come out for sixth months?
I’m with you on this one. I may be a fiction publicist by job title, but I’m a reader at heart. And let me tell you, the time it takes to get to the next book can drag on.
If you’re a fan waiting for the next book, here are some fun things to do to lessen the agony of waiting . . . at least a little bit.
One: Cast it. Pretend that you’re a big-time producer casting your favorite book as a movie. Which actors and actresses would you pick for the main roles? Fill out your dream cast list and ask a few friends to do the same. It can be fun to compare notes . . . and explain why your choices are clearly the best.
Two: Start a book club. Why? Not just because books are best shared, but because misery loves company. If you hook all of your friends on your favorite book, then you’ll have a circle of other people to join you in anxiously checking Amazon for the pre-buy of the next one. If you start an official club, check out our resource page for book clubs. But your “book club” could be just getting together with a few friends to chat over brunch about your favorite books.
Three: Make a countdown calendar. This is especially fun if you have friends to join you. Mark the release date on your calendar and do something related to the book once a month as you count down. If it’s an Amish novel, try some new recipes (check out these delicious-looking ones on Beverly Lewis’s website). When it’s a historical romance you’re eagerly awaiting, find out if there’s a historical landmark from that time period nearby (or even make some vacation plans). Maybe your countdown can be reading (or re-reading) one of the author’s previous books per month. Time flies when you’re having fun!
Four: “Like” your favorite authors on Facebook. It’s a great way to see updates like cover reveals and the latest news about upcoming books. And it’s great to learn a little bit more about the author as a person.
Five: Find authors that are similar to your favorite author. Bethany House has a nifty comparison chart you can use, but asking your librarian or other readers can be helpful too. Who knows? You might just find a new author you love and whose releases will help ease the waiting agony.
Six: Become an expert. Maybe reading that Dee Henderson book made you want to learn about how real hostage negotiators or investigators work. What if you found some prairie diaries to get some background on real mail order brides? (Melissa Jagears, author of A Bride for Keeps, links to some great free resources here.) I have to confess: I had never read an Agatha Christie mystery or any of the Sherlock Holmes stories before reading Julianna Deering’s Rules of Murder, but the style of Julianna’s book made me curious to check out the authors she gave tribute to.
Seven: Color. There’s an online program that will take your photos and turn them into coloring pages. Check it out here. (Make sure you’re using high-resolution images. On our website, that means going to the book’s page and clicking on “Download cover” underneath the cover image.) Will it actually help to relieve book release anticipation? Maybe not . . . but it’s fun!
Eight: Start a book review blog. I know, I’m biased—I love writing, especially writing about books. I’ve written a blog post with tips for creating a great book review blog. Bonus—a lot of authors will search for reviews of their books online, and if you’re a part of our blogger review program, we print your reviews and send them to the author. So it’s kind of like fan mail, only fan mail that can get other people excited about the author’s books too!
Are there any I missed? What do you do while waiting for a favorite author to release the next book? And what book are you waiting for right now?
(And, from last week’s post…the winners of the DVDs of When Calls the Heart are Amy Grochowski and Maria Wolfe! Please email me, Amy, at email@example.com with your mailing address, and I’ll send the DVDs your way! Thanks to everyone for the great setting ideas . . . maybe some of our authors will give them a try!)