My husband, who publishes my books, often mentions to people that I write. They are always curious (especially once they find out the books are romances), and I had been thinking creating a card would be a good idea even before I was asked in an art gallery last week if I had one. It was time to create one and be sure I always had it with me whenever there is interest.
The bookmarks seem like a good addition. The most obviously appropriate place to find readers, bookstores, is doubtless out since they likely consider eBooks to be competition. If I make print copies of some of my historicals, something I am considering through CreateSpace, then bookstores might be more open to it-- if they are the type of store to carry romances.
For cards or bookmarks, I thought the best idea was find a symbol apropos for romances. The image I had from a 2012 photo on Klamath Lake seemed perfect.
A dragonfly is an apt totem for romance. They spend most of their life in a creek, lake or pond where they consistently must break out of shells as they grow for several years. At a certain point, they break their last shell and emerge a changed insect, dry their wings and fly off. What could be more apropos as an image for a romance novel. A glorious moment full of the reminders of what is possible, the energy of which can carry us through times that aren't so pleasant.
When I was looking for a few key words to describe the type of books, I thought of a phrase I liked for how I see my books-- where dreams live.
I still don't know where I will be able to place the bookmarks but one possibility would be small, independent gift shops and hotels. Such businesses might regard it as advertising and say no but nothing ventured nothing gained.
It was fun creating them, and maybe this will be a way to get my name and books beyond Amazon. I've heard advertising on Google or Facebook doesn't really pay off and I believe it because I never read ads there. Indie writers, without corporate power behind them, can now get their ideas and books published. The next step is having them seen by those most likely to enjoy them.
When I finish the book I am currently writing, I'll find out what kinds of places might consider having them beside their cash register or on a nearby rack. If it turns out none, I'll let readers know that it didn't work. Although if I do Createspace later for the historicals, then bookstores become possible.
After I did the first, it seemed to me images of petroglyphs, which are earlier human's attempts to communicate, would be apropos. I have so many great photos that this will be hard to narrow down to just a few (bees landing on a saguaro, sunset at the beach, cow licking newborn calf) because so many do speak to love and communication.