Year end blogging challenge: best (blank) of 2016

I got a very clever tip yesterday from ViperChill about writing “Best of 2016” posts early (like RIGHT NOW) to cash in on all the search queries that are bound to happen next year.

The trick is to be the first; and luckily, since most authors don’t know much about SEO, this is a pretty easy thing to do that could potentially bring you a lot of traffic.

So I’m making a challenge for you, and I want to help you succeed.

Step One

Write a “Best of 2016” post.

These can be related to your genre or subject, but you should use more specific categories if possible. You can write about anything people will be searching for.


  • Top 10 young adult scifi books of 2016
  • Best sites for authors 2016
  • How to write a book in 2016
  • 25 best new thrillers of 2016

Get it?

Bonus step!

Creating lists of books is especially powerful if all the authors on the list share your article (which they might, if you email them and tell them they’ve been named a “best book of 2016”). This is probably easier if you choose some indie authors who don’t get as much attention, or are more approachable, although I would include a mix of traditionally and high quality self-published books.

Think about some great writers or series who you think deserve more visibility. Help give them a push. Note: You shouldn’t include your own book in the list, though you can name it in the bio section with a link.

How to do you find the books?

You’ll need to do a lot of research, but I would start this way:

Go to Amazon. Search for your keywords or categories. Mine are:

Kindle eBooks > Teen & Young Adult > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Paranormal & Urban

Look at the top 50 to 100 books in that category. Check out the author bio and websites. See what they’re working on and what they’re releasing in 2016. This would be a good job for a virtual assistant: you can hire one on for about $25 to $50 for a task like this. Have them write down the name of the book, the release date and a link to the author’s website in a Word doc, so that you can easily turn it into a blog post. Then email the authors to let them know about it (this is where site design can hurt you – if your website doesn’t look professional, they may not feel comfortable sharing it). Also they’ll value a book review or community site more than another author’s personal site.

Being first isn’t the most important thing, but it will help your article rank better than later articles. However, I also invite you to post your article on one of my sites, which get a lot of traffic, so there’s a better chance it will rank well and get more views. I’ll add your bio and a link to your site.

I can publish anything related to publishing, writing, book marketing, business, paranormal romance or young adult books. For other stuff, see if you can find a large, genre specific blog or website to post or share your article.

It’s OK to have “duplicate content” – usually you just want to post on your own blog first, and then distribute the article to another site in a few days, after the original article gets indexed.

Post links to your articles in the comments, and let me know if it’s OK for me to share/repost them for you.

Thanks and Happy Holidays!


About Derek Murphy

I help authors and artists turn their passions into full-time businesses, make a bigger impact, and blaze a luminous trail of creative independence. Right now I'm in Taiwan finishing a PHD in Literature, writing several books, and managing a handful of online businesses. Find me

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