The fiction guest blogging audience most novelists don’t know about

Novelists, here's a fiction guest blogging tip that will significantly expand the audience and reach for your novel. 

Guest blogging is one of my favorite book promotion tactics for all authors because it’s targeted. The more targeted your efforts, the more likely you are to reach the people who will love your book.

Problem is, many novelists don’t write guest posts. And those who do usually contribute to their friends’ blogs or write for genre blogs.

And that’s all good.

But you know what’s even better?

Adding topic specific blogs to your list of potential sites for fiction guest blogging.

Look for the nonfiction nuggets

Novels are often built with or around a wide range of nonfiction subjects and themes. These are what I call the “nonfiction nuggets” in your book. They’re a tool you can use to expand your reach both with the press and topic bloggers.

You can usually find your book’s nonfiction nuggets in its:

  • Professions
  • Real-life settings
  • Hobbies
  • Medical conditions
  • Industries
  • Themes
  • Conflicts

Once you identify your nonfiction elements (see the exercise below), you can match them to blogs on those subjects.

What does this look like in practice?

Here are a couple of real-life examples of how you can apply this approach.

I just finished reading Liz Alterman’s “The Perfect Neighborhood.” It has a key storyline revolving around a kindergartner walking home from school alone. The author could write a parenting blog post about what she uncovered during her research about how parents handle the walking-home-from-school situation.

She could also blog for a parenting site about how her experiences with cliquey school mothers informed her character development (because they probably did).

My friend Mollie Cox Bryan writes cozy mysteries. Her Cumberland Creek series is about a group of scrapbookers; the Cora Crafts books are craft retreat mysteries.

For the Cumberland Creek series, she can guest blog for blogs dedicated to scrapbooking because, of course, scrapbookers who read cozy mysteries are the people who are most likely to love her books. That logic applies to the Cora Crafts books, too.

There are so many possibilities for every book.

Complete this fiction guest blogging exercise

How do you apply this to your fiction? Try this exercise:

Then the fun begins: writing your guest post.

Download my free Guest Blogging Cheat Sheet now

guest blogging 2As a writer, you know that guest blogging involves more than just determining what you’ll blog about and who will be interested in that. You know that you have to deliver a guest post that your host will be proud to publish.

Start by reading the tips in my free “Guest Blogging Cheat Sheet.” It details nine best practices that will keep you from making mistakes that undermine your guest blogging success.

This cheat sheet, which you can download as a PDF file immediately, will help you deliver the guest post your host expects. It’s your shortcut to looking — and acting! — like a guest blogging pro.

The simple and easy process of identifying your book’s nonfiction topics and matching them to topic bloggers could vastly expand your reach to readers interested in something that plays a role in your story…and help you sell more books.

What are the nonfiction nuggets in your novel? Share one here in a comment! 

(Editor’s note: This article was first published in February 2017. It has been updated and expanded.)

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    1. Thanks, Cat! You know…you can also write these nonfiction nuggets into your manuscript intentionally so you’ve got something to work with in terms of guest blogging and publicity when the book comes out. Good luck!


  1. Hi Sandra. Just a note to say (again) how much I value your advice. I’m refocusing my life on writing. Had some personal issues the past few years that have been resolved and now have an opportunity to do this. Though I write fiction, your advice in this area is quite relevant as there are several non-fiction kernels in my current novel-in-progress. Take care and once again, thanks for sharing your expertise.Blessings Always.

    1. I’m glad you’re back to writing, Marianne. That’s great news. This post is for you and your fiction-writing colleagues so I’m glad you read it. I suspect you’ll enjoy pulling out those nonfiction nuggets and looking for opportunities to leverage them.


  2. Well, gee, why didn’t I think of this? LOL Nonfiction nuggets is a fabulous idea. You’re right, most of the blogs I’ve guest posted on are geared toward fellow authors. And while writers are readers too, targeting potential readers outside my writerly circle is a vastly larger audience. For instance, in my current historical romance WIP, my heroine is a knitter (as am I). There are tons of knitting blogs out there, and surely one of them would like to hear from an author, right?

    Thanks for all your wisdom!

    1. BAM! You “get it,” Luanna! You totally made my day. Thank you for taking the time to comment and making me smile.


  3. This is certainly a more effective way to blog than to write a thinly disguised (or undisguised) “buy my book” post. Writing about those topics is interesting, informative, and targeted. And not annoying. Very much an example of the “people buy from people they know, like, and trust” mantra that non-novelists have been barking at us for years.

    1. Michael, thanks for summarizing this so well. That’s exactly the whole point of this tactic.

      Thanks for stopping by!


  4. the suggestion for non fiction nuggets is the best! I’m setting up an author page, very simple but… never thought i could use the guest blog idea. With your clues and thanks to your associate, I can list many from my novel Dear Kiss. I will make this an important feature of my very simple author page. Since i am hard at work on the sequel, even more important to “ get it right” . Many thanks, Sandy, I’ve come a long way since our phone call a few years ago!

    1. I’m thrilled these tips are helpful, Margaret, and I’m happy you’ve discovered them. So many novelists don’t know about the possibilities with topic-specific blogs, so those who do and take action can enjoy a competitive advantage.


  5. Loved this article. Two non-fiction nuggets in my novel are the 4 C’s of diamonds and the experience on Catalina Island. Thank you for sharing this marketing idea.

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