Friday, November 30, 2012

Rebecca Dahlke, Publisher of All Mystery e-newsletter

Rebecca Dahlke publishes a thriving Mystery Newsletter. She's here with us today to talk about how she started it.

In 2010, I started an e-newsletter for mystery and suspense authors. It ran, free of charge to the authors until December 2011.  I decided to let it go because: 1) authors just weren't with me on how effective this kind of advertising could be, and 2) I had my own books to write.

So I put the website in mothballs, but kept the Facebook site, the yahoo group (which is where authors meet to talk about promotion, and readers come to see what authors are talking about.) and Good Reads group for Indie and small press promotion, and a Twitter account.

Since then I have put four mysteries up on Amazon/Kindle, and because I understood that my books are a product, I also began a six month quest for the best, and most effective, form of advertising.

The results were exciting!  I discovered that with a combination of inexpensive paid and free promotion, I could sell more books. I thought the results of this were interesting enough to share. I put together a 7 page handout and spoke on this subject with my local Sisters in Crime chapter in Tucson. The handout was necessary because I had a lot of powerful information to share, but also I cautioned my grateful listeners with the following: The only thing I could guarantee about this information was that some of it would change.

That was in June 2012, and sure enough, things did change. One of the sites I listed as smart and creative bit the dust, and another site, Digital Books Today, has taken a giant leap after only 18 months in the business.  Eighteen months? Gee, All Mystery e-newsletter started before DBT… so that meant… but wait! There's more!

In a 2012  e-mail from the founder of Digital Books Today, Anthony Wessel  says, and I quote: "Traffic on our Sites: March: 8,000, June 16,000" and in their "The Top 100 Best Free Kindle Books List: November 2011: 600+ and June 2012- 10,000+ with 38,000 click outs to books on Amazon."

Obviously authors had finally seen the light and were using paid book marketing as part of a successful campaign to sell books. I know, because I was using them too, and the results have been gratifying—except I had one complaint: As a mystery writer, all of the promotion sites had mystery squished in between vampire and memoir.

It didn't take me but a nano-second to see that All Mystery e-newsletter's time had finally come. I ticked off the obstacles for resurrecting this e-newsletter against the fact that it might take some time to gain momentum. Then realized I already had all of my requirements for a good promotion site: I still had my list of readers from last year's e-newsletter, and I had a Facebook page, Yahoo and Good Reads groups, and Twitter with a small army of Re-Tweet pals.

September 1st I sent out the first weekly e-newsletter  accompanied with additional author posts at Facebook and Twitter that would continue throughout the week.

Sound interesting? Author information page:

Last but not least, for those of you who would like a copy of my copy of that 7 page hand-out for both free and paid promotions for authors, send me an e-mail with "promotion handout" in the subject line and I'll send you a PDF copy. E-mail:

Find her Books on her Amazon Author Page


  1. Great information. I'm definitely looking more into this after my next book comes out.

  2. I like how Rebecca turned a concept around and found a new way to help authors and readers connect. The genre specificness helps keep attention span and readers know they are more likely to be interested in the content.