Be an Author Stalker

There are a hundred different ways to becoming a bestselling author, but the journey is different for every author. The knowledge you obtain about your target audience will be your most productive path. 

Think about this: Stalker: “Someone who follows, trails, hunts, shadows, and chases others without them knowing.” Author: “Someone who follows, trails, hunts, shadows, and chases readers without them knowing.” 

I always thought of myself as an “Author Stalker.” I listen to people in the bookstore, watch how they view books, and their patterns of choosing a book. As for my younger audience, I ask a ton of questions. “What are you reading in school? Why kind of books do you like to read? What makes a great book? What makes a terrible book?” Kids and teenagers are honest when discussing books, which is why I listen. 

What I’ve discovered is that readers have their own gatekeepers. These gatekeepers are values, goals, passions, and emotions that influence their daily lives. Understanding and relating to those influences is your key to knowledge, which will direct your author career. 

Most authors fail, because they do not know how their audience really thinks. For some authors, market research consists of finding reasons on why their books are great, instead of using market research to find new opportunities. Your method of research is critical. 

Why is it essential that the reader buy your book? Knowing that your target audience likes to read books, is not as important as knowing why they read books. Don’t be fooled into saying, “Well, people will like my books because they enjoy reading.” You need to dig deeper than that. In fact, you need to personalize your market research. 

Do not make the mistake of writing a book, then trying to find an audience to like your book. An author in it for the long haul will learn about a particular audience, then write books based on that knowledge. 

Research your genre and story ideas to the point that no one in the world knows more about it than you. If trying to decide between marketing for your audience, or researching your audience, always choose research. 

Readers do not change. An author’s knowledge of the reader’s changes. 

Write about things that your reader never heard, or encountered before. You should become the primary resource for books. Your knowledge is what will attract readers. 

(1) Benefit your readers, (2) be available to your readers, (3) entertain your readers, (4) plant images into your reader’s subconscious, (5) be the most knowledgeable person in your reader’s life.

(1) Benefit your readers. 

I’ll say this a hundred times until every author believes these words, “Write books that fill a need in the life of your target audience.” If you benefit a reader, they will need you. If they need you, then you have loyal fan. 

(2) Be available to your readers. 

Most authors write blogs about what is going on in their life. Instead, authors should be writing blogs about what is going on in the reader’s life. How can you find out what’s going on? Research = Knowledge. 

(3) Entertain your readers. 

If you are a great Author Stalker and ask your target audience many questions, you will know exactly how to entertain your readers. 

(4) Plant images into your reader’s subconscious. 

This may sound a little freaky, but remember the gatekeepers for your target audience are values, goals, passions, and emotions that influence their daily lives. Your goal is not to manipulate those influences, or sneak by them. Your goal is to write stories that relate to those influences. 

(5) Be the most knowledgeable person in your reader’s life. 

How do non-fiction books succeed? Reader’s buy those books for inspiration, weight loss, financial tips, and other advice that will influence their lives. A great non-fiction writer will make the reader feel like the book was personally written for them. The author is credible to the reader, which means, the author is knowledgeable. The reader learns something in every chapter. 

Fiction writers can use non-fiction methods to gain readership. Make the reader feel like the book is personalized to them. Show that you are credible writing in a certain genre. Make sure the reader learns something in every chapter. Become the an author that the reader goes to for knowledge. 

Be an Author Stalker. Follow, trail, hunt, shadow, and chase readers. 

Just don’t let them catching you doing it… 

Ron Knight 

“111 Rules of Being an Author” Check out:  

“1,000 Free Tips for Authors” Check out Untraditional Publishing:


Ron Knight

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  1. Great blog post, Ron.

  2. Wow this is a great article and I love it totally. I do need a new bio and I think this article will help me.