Author Goes Virtual in Online Video Game
Identifying and connecting with a target market can be a challenge for authors, but with dedication and research, finding your book's audience and thinking of ways to fill their needs can expand your book's sales opportunities. For Lynn Hardy, author of Prophecy of the Flame: Love's Dawning, hosting a book signing at a creative location frequented by potential readers with a variety of interests led her into a new media opportunity- a contract to produce her book as a video game.
In the months before her book was completed, she forged a connection with the manager of her local video game shop, thinking her book would appeal to his customers. It was this connection that is now propelling Prophecy of the Flame to success in the online world.The manager of the store had existing plans to launch a video game company of his own, and after reading Hardyâs book, he felt that the story would create the perfect debut game for his video game company, Hypocrite Games.
Prophecy of the Flame falls between two genres, so in developing her marketing plan, Hardy had to make decisions about which target audiences would be most responsive to her marketing. "After conducting more research, I realized that my book is equal parts fantasy and womenâs fiction," she says. "Not only did I have a group of [characters] melding magic with twenty-first century technology, but a love triangle as well," Ultimately she chose to specifically target male and female readers who gravitate towards the fantasy genre by playing video games or attending renaissance fairs.
While a sequel to Love's Dawning is in the works for release at the same time as the video game, Lynn is looking forward to writing the alternative endings to the book to be optioned in the game. She attributes her success to being in the "right place at the right time," but it is her dedication to learning about her readers and meeting them on their level that helped her successfully network her way into a video game contract.
Her advice for authors? "A self-published author should always be networking and making the most of every opportunity; never stop promoting your product. You never know who you are talking to. I sell three or four books every time I fly across the country- one of these trips, I may be sitting next to my soon-to-be agent or producer!"