Friday, November 19, 2010

Mary Montague Sikes - Monti!

Introducing Mary Montague Sikes - Monti

Monti is well along in her virtual blog tour and today she stops here to share some views on book trailers and news on her releases.

Book Trailers – Do They Help You Select a Book?

Book trailers have become pretty popular among writers. My two latest books, Night Watch and Dangerous Hearts, have book trailers. I just checked and Night Watch has been viewed 161 times and Dangerous Hearts has been played 185. Of course, some of the views counted are my visits checking to see how many other folks have come by to see it. I don’t know how many views an author can expect from trailers of his/her books, but I think that would be an interesting statistic to have.

As I thought about Night Watch and the connection of my book to the sea, I was pleased my trailer illustrates that dramatic link for readers who love the water and visiting places surrounded by it. Although I know that everyone who views a book trailer doesn’t buy the book, I wonder if some people do.

(Karen stepping in here to say she's intrigued by this, since she has a boat of her own)

Monti and The Question du Jour

If you are purchasing a book, will looking at a trailer influence you strongly for or against a purchase?

Will you even bother to take a look? Here are the links to my trailers: (Karen here again- Blogger is having a link attachment glitch this morning. Please copy and paste the urls to see Monti's trailers. I'm still working on getting them active)

More and more often now in order to be successful, published authors must become marketers. I wonder what promotional ideas work best for them. Please share your thoughts on book trailers as a useful marketing tool.

My virtual blog book tour for Night Watch is nearing an end. This is my last stop on the tour which seems a little sad. I’ve loved meeting lots of new people along the way. I hope I’ve picked up some new readers and blog followers as well.

Thank you, KK for having me as your guest. It’s fun to be a part of a different blog each day and discover different styles of blog interaction.

Please don't forget I have a contest going. The winner will receive an autographed copy of my new novel, Night Watch. Just leave a comment at each site where I will be guest blogging as my Blog Book Tour for Night Watch continues. The schedule is below:

Nov. 11 - Patricia Stoltey

Nov. 12 - Nancy Williams

Nov. 15 - AlexCavanaugh

Nov. 16 - Marian Allen

Nov. 17 - Bodie Parkhurst

Nov. 18 - Thoughts in Progress

Nov. 19 - K. K. Brees

Mary Montague Sikes The Official Bio!

Monti is an award-winning author, freelance writer, photographer, artist, and teacher who loves to travel, especially to exotic tropical locations. The settings for her books and articles include Jamaica, Antigua, Trinidad, and St. Martin. Her most recent research trips carried her to Los Cabos on the western coast of Mexico, to Yellowstone National Park where she took over 500 photographs, and to Carmel-by-the-Sea where she marveled at photo opportunities wherever she turned.

The Fredericksburg, VA native is author of seven award-winning books. She presents workshops on promotion and marketing to state and national conventions as well as to many local writers groups. Hotels to Remember, a coffee table book that includes the Jefferson Hotel, the Homestead, and the Hotel Del Coronado is illustrated with her artwork and photographs.

A founder of Virginia Romance Writers, she has served on the Board of Governors of the Virginia Writers Club and is a member and past president of the Richmond Branch of the National League of American Pen Women. Her poem and paintings are featured in Happy Birthday, Mr. Lincoln, an anthology of work by members of the National League of American Pen Women. She is included in Who’s Who in American Women.

Her paintings are exhibited widely in Virginia and are in private and public collections in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean. Night Watch, her latest novel, was released earlier this year. Dangerous Hearts, a novella set in Virginia, was released by Red Rose Publishing in June.


  1. KK,

    Thanks for having me as your guest today.
    This is the last stop on my Blog Book Tour for Night Watch. Hope folks will come by and participate in the contest I'm having. The winner will receive a signed copy of Night Watch.


  2. I love the trailer for Night Watch--the music and the images are great!

    I find that book trailer don't really affect my opinion of the book overall; if it's not spectacular but if I've read something positive about the book before they won't deter me. But, if it's a really good trailer, then I probably will check out the book a little more.

  3. What an interesting author! Glad I met her, thanks to you, KK.

    To Monti: I rarely watch the trailer. I would prefer reading an excerpt from the book. This is what will help me decide if I want to buy it. I think this is a crucial thing for self-published books since this mode of publishing is becoming so widespread now.

  4. Hi Monti! I just found out about your tour when I stopped by Thoughts in Progress. I enjoyed going back and checking out each stop on your tour. I've enjoyed learning more about you at each stop, about your travels and about your books.

    I'd also like to say that I liked how you shared a different picture of yourself for each of your blog stops. I can't remember ever seeing another author do that before. I like it, because I feel it personalized each post. I'd like to see more authors do this on tours.

  5. Golden Eagle, thanks for letting me know what you think about book trailers. I'm glad you like the one for Night Watch.

    Ann, interesting that you don't watch the trailers that much. You mention excerpts from the book--something I have forgotten to include on this book tour! Oops!

    Susanne, thanks for going back and checking out the other tour stops. You're right about the different photos. Wonderful what digital cameras have done for us. I love visuals!

  6. Glad you're here, Monti. Sorry Blogger is being a poop about live links today.

  7. Interesting question about the book trailer. I got one for my last novel (Good on Paper). While there were parts of it I really liked, there were other parts that just seemed to miss the point of the book (I suppose that's to be expected; I seriously doubt the person producing the trailer actually read the book). I'm not even sure how to go about checking my numbers, to tell you the truth, but you can track inquiries and purchases by inserting something into the trailer that's only present there. We used to do this in the marketing pieces I designed all the time. Something like, "Tell us where you saw this trailer and get 10% off" or something. If you do something a little different in each piece of marketing you have a means of tracking what's effective, and what's not.

    Bodie P

  8. Thanks for having this sweet lady and intriguing author on your site. I learn a little more about her and about her process with every stop.

    I'm almost finished reading NIGHT WATCH and can't decide who to lend it to first!

    Marian Allen

  9. Book trailers! Another challenge. Congratulations on all your blog tours Monti. And a big thank you to KK for hosting her.

    Just a note and I hope I don't upset you KK. I needed this help too and someone was kind enough to explain it. When you add a link for live feed to your post. Look at your options on top of your new post. Highlight where you want the link and click on the thing that is green and looks like a movie reel. It will pop up a place to add the link, paste it in, hit ok, and presto, zombo, you have a link.
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

  10. Bodie, thanks so much for your comments on trailers! I gave the designer the text and some of the photos for my trailers. Haven't learned to do it myself, but I'm sure those who create their own are pleased with their accomplishments. I have no idea how to know if any sales are generated. Sounds like you have an idea which would be interesting, if not helpful!

    Marian, thanks for the compliment! Please encourage anyone who reads Night Watch to put up a little review on Amazon. Even a sentence is helpful!

    Thanks, Nancy. This is the last one for a while. I recall you saying you'd be worn out for someone doing it for three weeks. I think you're right. Three weeks would definitely tire you physically and emotionally both, I suspect.
    You are something with the techno stuff you've learned!


  11. Thanks Nancy - I tried that and it kept saying "loading" for over an hour and never took. I'm trying it again. We shall see. Grrrrr.

  12. KK, nice to meet you.

    Monti, I've enjoyed your tour. I've noticed more and more book trailers and I'd have to say some of them have grabbed my attention to look closer at a book that I might not have otherwise. Best of luck.

    Thoughts in Progress

  13. Thanks, Mason! I've enjoyed looking at some of the trailers as well. Some of them have peaked my interest in a book.

  14. I'm an agnostic on book trailers. I think an interesting one would make me pay more attention to a book (and I liked yours, Monti!). But I agree with Ann -- an excerpt from the book is more important to me.

  15. I was going to hope through the other stops but, dang, what a drag the links weren't there. Hope it went well for you, Monti, and mostly that you have fun with it!

  16. A writer and an artist. How great is that! I thought art was my calling, but the doors to writing are what opened up. Great that you can do them both. Ever considered writing and illustrating a children's series?

  17. Other Lisa, thanks for commenting. I'm glad you liked my trailer.

    Dani, thanks for stopping by. Links to the other sites have been on Notes Along the Way every day, except today. Think I'll go back and add them. It's been fun!

    Stephen, know how you feel! I love art. Yes, on the children's book, but it's a tough road and I've never followed it. Thanks for commenting.

  18. When book trailers first started to appear, I wasn't impressed. I've changed my mind, though, and occasionally feature an interesting trailer on my blog. Yes, I've been persuaded to buy a book just from the trailer. It's an added bonus to "judging a book by its cover," which I also been known to do. :)

  19. Thanks, Patricia! Am glad to know. Maybe the trailers have gotten better, too!

  20. Book trailer will definitely affect my decision to buy a book. An interesting one will pique my interest while a lousy trailer is a sign that the book can be crappy too. Congratulations Monti.

    Did the publiser develop the trailer? Did they consult you a lot about it?

    My Darcy Mutates

  21. No, the publisher didn't make either of these. I hired another writer who does publicity for Red Rose Publishing authors to make both Night Watch and Dangerous Hearts trailers. I think I can learn to do it but haven't taken the time yet.

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting!