A little more brainstorming on my part: I think it's a given that the writing, the title, the cover and the formatting have to be excellent. I was just over on Goodreads, paging through the amateur sample reads and examining which books had the most likes and comments.
This might seem a little mean-spirited but I noticed that authors who had posted profile pictures of themselves for their work that fit into a clearly defined archtype (brooding artist, innocent young woman, popular Anime cartoon character) seemed to get a good amount of interest.
It reminds me of the story I heard about the artist from maybe the thirties who got into a bunch of NY galleries by pretending to be a brooding Eastern European immigrant with his hair slilcked back. He basically played a hoax on the NY art community to prove that their conception of what an artist is was more important than the hastily prepared "modern art" that he submitted.
I'm not saying this to complain. I'm simply pointing out the reality of the current market.
This leads me to believe that an author's overall image (book blurb, author photo, profile description) are of the utmost importance.
Last edited by davidwfleming; 03-09-2012 at 06:13 PM.