Book Club



Five Reasons Authors Should Blog

Every day, WordPress sends blog ideas to its subscribers via The Daily Post. Usually I just watch these things go by. Sometimes I read what other bloggers have written.  But on Tuesday the daily prompt was “Why do you blog?”

Fantastic question!

1.  Progress Report:  I started this blog to keep friends and family up to date on my book. I never dreamed strangers would stop by and like what I had to say. Eight months later, my site has received over 4,000 hits and has been read in 27 countries. Even if you subtract the few hundred hits my parents have made, it’s still pretty cool.

2.  Marketing Tool:  Apparently publishers look favourably upon first-time authors who already have a following – better chance of increased sales I guess. I seriously doubt it makes or breaks a publishing contract, but hey, every little bit helps.

3.  Discipline:  For a blog to attract visitors the writer has to post meaningful content consistently. Some say daily, but I prefer weekly. Let’s face it, no one is interesting enough to listen to every day.

4.  Community: Valerie’s Journal is now part of a broader social media marketing strategy.  Through it, my goodreads account, twitter and my facebook page (links can be found in the column to the right), I’ve met other writers, agents and journalists all over the world.  We share information, learn from one another, and celebrate each other’s achievements.  In fact, it was through blogging that I met the members of my writing group.

5.  The “Godin/Peters Principle”: Hey, if it’s good enough for them …


Valerie Francis

The Mystery of Mrs. Christie

Well, you’re not going to believe this. Reece Witherspoon and I picked the same book for our February book clubs. Sort of.  Late last year, I came across THE MYSTERY OF MRS. CHRISTIE by Marie Benedict and was fascinated by the premise. Benedict writes historical fiction, much like Philippa Gregory,

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Valerie Francis

A Girl Named Howard

This month, rather than recommend one book to read, I’m recommending the entire body of work of one author because Anne Rice, who passed away December 11, 2021, single-handedly revolutionized the role of vampires in literature.  Yes, vampires.  And the impact she’s had is more significant than you might realize.

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Valerie Francis

The Christmas Bookshop

If you’ve had it up to your eyes with holiday preparations and are looking for a light-hearted story to escape into, The Christmas Bookshop, by Jenny Colgan, might be just the ticket. The title is a bit misleading, in my opinion. Yes, there’s a bookstore. Yes, the plot unfolds in

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