Planning a Blog Tour? Think Twice.

Blog tours are all the rage right now for indie and traditionally-published authors. My advice: think it through, and then talk to other people who've done them, and think it through again.

I'd heard mixed reports about them, and decided to try one myself. Now I wish I hadn't wasted my time.

Working with one of the tour-organizing web sites, I arranged for a two-week blog tour that ended up with 14 "stops." The organizer was thrilled by the strong response. At her direction, I'd written a character interview with my lead; an interview of my own in response to a series of questions; and supplied the book trailer and book cover.

One blogger never ran a review, re-scheduled, then still didn't run it. Nine other reviews did run, ranging from good to excellent. But some were cursory, and a number of them were by bloggers who apparently didn't believe in proofreading, and weren't very good writers to begin with. I found the latter aspect of the tour dispiriting. After all the work I'd put into the book, I was being reviewed by people whose writing skills were subpar?

Worst of all, I saw no bump in sales over the previous month whatsoever.

There was a good side, of course. I didn't have to deal with flight delays and all the other hassles of a real tour. But those were the only advantages, and they don't add up to much. With a real tour, actual people show up, books get sold, and you feel you're making something happen, however small.