As my grandfather used to say when somebody chimed in on a subject under discussion, “Another county heard from.” Everybody’s talking about book tags these days, so here’s my two cents’ worth:
Tags are words that a reader might use in searching for a book. Think of a librarian or bookseller asking you, “What can I help you find?” And you say, for example, “I’d like a book about a strong female. If it has a dog in it, that’s even better. And I’m going on vacation to Paris next year, so something set in Paris would be fun. Do you have any mysteries like that?” And the librarian or bookseller says, “Hmmm…. Do you like racy stuff?” And you say, “Sure do! In fact, if there’s some steamy romance in it, I’m sold!” So the librarian or bookseller thinks, “Strong female, dog, Paris, mystery, racy, steamy, romance,” and finds some books to recommend.
That’s what tags are. Those key words a reader might use that would turn your book up in a search for what the reader is looking for.
Your name and the name of the book are good tags. If the book is part of a series, the name of the series or the series character or just the word series are good tags.
How to tag books: Go to a book’s Amazon page. Hit the t key twice REALFAST. This brings up a tag window. Type in the tags you want and click Save Tags.
Marian Allen, Eel’s Reverence, Uncle Phineas, attempted genocide, priests, mermaids, older female protagonist, religion, allegory, faith, non-violence, peace, fantasy, race, science fiction
Lonnie, Me and the Hound of Hell
marian allen, lonnie me and the hound of hell, science fiction, bizarro, cats, dogs, fantasy, gay, ghosts, humor, kindle, shape-shifters, short stories, vampires
The King of Cherokee Creek
marian allen, bud blossom, chinese-american, collection, dragon, family, fantasy, floating restaurant, friendship, kindle authors, literary, short stories
MA’s Monthly Hot Flashes
flash fiction, hot flashes, ma, ghosts, humor, kindle, marian allen, micro fiction, mystery, relationships, romance, science fiction, smart phone stories, 99 cents
This shows the names of my books, the Amazon page addresses of the books, and the tags I prefer.
Once you’ve done it a couple of times, you’ll see how fast and easy it is!
Just play nice. Don’t tag a book with something unpleasant like overpriced or lame. Those won’t help anybody find the book. Nobody is going to search for overpriced books. Nobody will see negative tags except people who look at the tags, and they’ll know those tags were put there by a disgruntled reader who doesn’t care enough to do more than key the paint job on the car. If you want to express displeasure, write a review and justify your opinion.
If anybody wants to go to Amazon and tag my books and click the Like button, that would be jolly kind, but suit yourself.
WRITING PROMPT: Pick a book or story, yours or somebody else’s. What fifteen words or short phrases would you use to define it so that somebody who didn’t know it existed could find it in a search? Remember, they don’t know it exists, so it isn’t likely they’d search for white whale, although they might search for whaling.