May 6, 2011

Fantastic Fiction Sidebar

...I simply turned to my favorite backlist website, Fantastic Fiction. If isn’t on your radar yet, it’s the best source I know for sussing out backlist and series order information. Just last week I learned that Rose Fox’s (one of my PW editors) mother wrote romance. I looked Jennifer Rose up on FF and sent Rose the link, which she promptly included in her Twitter feed. (from Order of Importance, my blog piece for H&H, online May 5th.)

When I wrote the first draft of that blog entry, I took a "time out" smack dab in the middle of it for a sidebar about In my next draft I decided to pull it out as a full length companion piece, only it really didn't "fit" at H&H. So I talked about it with Megan, and decided to post it here.

For those who haven't used before, it's well worth a detailed introduction. As talk of Christine Warren's new Others book kicks off my H&H piece, I captured a screenshot of her Fantastic Fiction page and broke it out into three more manageable images. If all of this is too elementary because you've used Fantastic Fiction forever, forgive me.

This first image shows the author's picture and provides a generally brief biography. I say generally because the bio for Julie Garwood is extensive. Photos aren't always included. Sometimes the author's birth date is included. If the author is dead, the date is generally noted.

New and forthcoming books are broken out, with dates attached, and clicking a cover/title link brings you to a separate page for an individual book. All the individual book pages include, when possible, synopsis information, along with purchase and issue/reissue information. Click here for the page to Black Magic Woman and see what I mean.

Below the new/forthcoming books section is the meat of the page. This part of the page provides the backlist and series information I use on an almost daily basis. I was thrilled when the computers at the bookstore were able to access the Internet because using Fantastic Fiction was often easier in helping to determine a series order than B&N's own system. Many customers walked off with a little slip of paper in their pockets/pocketbooks with "" written on it for future use.

Christine Warren's Fixed series (with each of the six titles and their dates of publication) is followed by her Novels of the Others. The 11 already published books—in order and with dates included—and other titles in the series set to be published this year are listed. Stand-Alone novels follow, then anthologies. All of the titles are links to individual pages, and wherever possible, linked covers are shown.

The third part of the page features author recommendations and a set of links to other authors that may interest the reader. To be honest, I've never actually scrolled down far enough to pay much attention to this part of the page, but it's probably worth a look.

As with the individual book pages, Fantastic Fiction provides quick links to Amazon in the U.S. and U.K., and for those looking to find copies of perhaps hard to find books, those individual pages also provide direct links to various used copies.

Before signing off, I thought I'd also mention a site referred to in one of the first comments to my corresponding H&H piece: While it's a free site, unlike Fantastic Fiction you need to register. Once registered, though, you click "follow" for the series you read, and it'll let you know when the next installment goes on sale. I registered and will be giving it a shot in upcoming weeks and months.

Let's see...I now use my personally designed database, honed and adjusted over the last six or so years to track my reading, goodreads, fantasticfiction, and now fictfact. How do I ever find the time to actually, you know, read?


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