Blogs, twitter and facebook changed the online world and opened up new ways for authors to interact with their readers. I enjoy meeting authors online and follow quiet a few on twitter, fb and via blogs. I love to learn little things about their lifes as writers and to stay up to date with upcoming books.
From time to time I also like it when an author shares something private (not too private) with her/his readers. But sometimes I feel that some authors tend to give away to much information on their private life. I don't want to know every little intimate detail. Sometimes TMI can make me feel strange towards an author and her/his books. So I learned to unfollow the authors who share too much with their readers because otherwise I would have trouble to enjoy their books.
I also don't like it when authors publish one political (and really dumb) propaganda post after another. There's a pretty high probability that an author's readers have different political opinions and I think it's not so bright to make fun of one certain group over and over again. Of course authors should be able to state their opinions but when you have a facebook fanpage for your readers this might be the wrong place to do so. At the beginning of the year I unfriended an author on fb because her political posts started to make me dislike her. I enjoy her books and didn't want her IMO unprofessional behaviour to overshadow my reading experience.
My #1 pet peeve is when an author doesn't answer emails from readers. I email authors mostly to say thanks for a great book and to ask something about future projects. Or to ask them for a guest post or interview for my blog. Most authors I encountered are very friendly and professional when dealing with their emails but some just ignore them.
I can understand not answering very negative and mean emails. However my own emails are always very nice and most often I would be happy with getting a "Thanks" or "Yes/No" back. But when I get no answer at all it just sucks and makes me wonder why the author is offering readers a way for contact at all.
When you get emails from your readers treat them as you want to be treated when you contact the customer service of a business. I can imagine that authors get an enormous number of emails every day but when you offer a way for contact then you should be willing and happy to receive emails and also answer them.
In my opinion authors are like business owners and readers are like their customers. If you want to be successful you should treat your customers in a friendly and respectful way. If you just ignore them, make fun of them or bombard them with intimitate details of your life they might start looking for other businesses to spend their money on.
Rant over :)
I want to know what you think about authors and how they interact with readers in the online world. Do you think that I expect to much or do you agree that an author should answer nice and professional emails by readers and bloggers?