Develop and promote your stories.
On June 16, 2019 | 1 Comments

Working with people to develop and promote your stories.

Working with people to develop and promote your stories. I have always felt that working with people makes our businesses stronger. Brings to mind the old adage it is harder to break a bundle of twigs.  I also believe that things happen for a reason.  We meet people at different times in our lives and we just click.  I have been very fortunate over the years to meet some very interesting people.

Let me introduce Tamara Kerr (The Reading Mermaid), she is a reviewer and book promoter. I would like to share part of our chat, that we had this morning.

T:  Richard, thank you so much for having me here. I am very excited to work with you and your company!

R: I would like to start by asking, how you got into publishing?  And what was it that compelled you to work in this funny business?

T: In one word. BOOKS!  I love books, I am very passionate about reading and I like to encourage others to do the same whenever and wherever I can.  I first started The Reading Mermaid about 3 years ago as a reviewer.  I started getting more and more requests for reviews, I found myself talking to, and befriending more authors.   We talked a lot about aspects of marketing and the fact that it is hard work.  I found it a little shocking that most authors, for the most part, market themselves.  For most authors, it takes them many months, or even years, to edit, proofread and craft their story. Then the work of marketing their books keeps them from working on their next story.  It is amazing how much time it can take promoting books.  I started to get involved with authors helping them, and that developed into the services I now offer.  In a way, it gives the author more time to write.  I keep my prices well within the range of indie publishers, and self-published authors.  I find it rewarding to take the work off their shoulders.

R: I am sure we would love to hear more about you.  Can you give me a flavor of your home life, paint me a picture of home life.

T:  My home life starts in Dayton, Ohio. It consists of me, my hubby Jon, our 4-year-old son James, our ball python Baby Jane, our scorpion Kane, our gecko Ernie, our bunny Hershey and our 3 tarantulas Pumpkin, Satine and Stripes. My husband is not a reader but more of a gamer and my son seems to be following suit. Although, I do read to my son every night and he loves our special time together.

When I’m not working in my business, I am giving to charities (WWF, Red Nose Day and ASPCA to name a few) and working in the community bringing reading and books to those in need. I run a book drive every year around Christmas for elder care and child care facilities in my community. I’m also planning a few community book events.

R:  Sounds like a wonderfully full life.  How do you like to work with authors, can you tell me a bit about your process? Do you make friends of the authors?  Or do you prefer to stay a little detached?

T: Yes, some of my best friends are authors I have reviewed. I like working very closely with my authors. Their hard work is very important to me and I like to treat it as if it were my own. Some authors need more help than others to find what they need and what fits their book, or books best, and that is just fine. It’s all about the personal touch. I want my authors to know that I really do care about them and their work. This is another reason that we offer the services that we do, and tailor to fit their individual needs.

R: I would love to hear about a really good experience you have had.

T: An author I recently reviewed, loved my review and summary of her books so much, that she used my words as the blurb on the backs of her books.  She also used my text for her book summaries for her Product Description on Amazon.  This was the first paper publication of my reviews and I was just ecstatic.  You can find this author and her books at the top of the My Authors page:

R: As a reviewer how many books do you read a week?  Is there any room left for pleasure reading after?  If so what do you enjoy reading?

T:  I don’t track my reading by week, as it can be very sporadic.  In a normal month, I read anywhere from 12 – 20 books and last year I read 345 books. Right now, there’s little room for pleasure reading, I’m not going to lie, but I do love reading the material that I receive from my authors and publishing companies. It gives me great pleasure to do what I do.  When I do have time for pleasure reading, I tend to gravitate more toward horror and dark gothic tales. I love the works of Edgar Allan Poe and H. P. Lovecraft.

R: With reading so much, have you been tempted to write?  If you did what genre?

T: I do write actually! I write poetry and horror short stories featuring main characters with mental illness. I suffer from mental illness myself, so it is very much writing from the heart for me. My poetry has been published and has won several awards. I am currently in talks with a couple of publishing companies about the first compilation book of my work.

R: Plans for the future?

T:  My plans for the future, revolve around growing my business, I would like to see some good, solid growth and get my book published before 2020. My larger goals involve expanding a company, The Reading Mermaid’s Reviews, so that we employ more people.  I envision a workforce that works from home, along the lines of stay-at-home moms and dads and retired folk. I see it as a way of making a little more income for their families.

R: Would you like to share your top 5 tips for successful book promotion?

T:  1. You need a website for you as an author. There are many you can build yourself and utilize for free.

  1. Create your own Author Facebook Page, you need that personal point of contact, rather than a group.

  2. Many people have a love/hate relationship with Facebook but it can be a great tool for marketing.   Definitely, take advantage of that. Instagram and Twitter are great too.

  3. Social media in itself can be daunting and scary but, the fact is, the more people you reach out to there, the more people will buy and even share posts about your book.

  4. Get people to review your book. Even a bad review is better than no review at all.  In My experience, the odd thing is, most bad reviews get more hits than good reviews do. The overall goal is to get people talking about you and your book.

R: Thank you Tamara, it really has been a pleasure having a chat with you, and I am looking forward to working more closely with you and your company. Maybe you can tell us how others can get in touch with you and where they can see your reviews.

T: Absolutely! I’m very excited to work with you and your company and especially your authors. You can always reach me via email at:

And you can visit my website at:

There are links on my website to all of my social media. You can find me on almost every platform. You can also reach me via Facebook messaging as it comes through to my phone just like a text message. That is honestly the best way to get a hold of me. If you ever have any questions about me, my company or what we can do for you please don’t hesitate to reach out. I am always here to answer any questions you may have.

Thank you, Richard, for this wonderful opportunity to work with you and your authors. I know we will accomplish great things together.


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Alice Posted June 16, 2019 at9:25 am   Reply

Thank you Ric and Tamara! It was great meeting Tamara and learning more about her. I really want to see pictures of all the pets! Tamara did a lovely review of A Merman’s Choice 🙂

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