According to the poll I ran this past week on Survey Monkey, that’s who makes up the audience for my book. Well, not entirely, but a significant portion! My book proposal has a “Market” section where I’m supposed to define who is likely to find my book appealing. So I gave a very short overview of the novel and asked some questions of women who thought it sounded like something they would like to read. It was incredibly enlightening!
Originally, I thought of my audience as someone, well, a lot like me. And there are some similarities, but there are also some unexpected quirks. For example, I hardly watch any reality/competition-type TV. Responders overwhelmingly enjoy shows like American Idol, Dancing with the Stars and America’s Got Talent. I thought my reader would enjoy magazine like Ladies Home Journal and Better Homes & Gardens. Those made multiple appearances, but so did The New Yorker and Bon Appetit. As for hobbies, I was thinking cooking and gardening. Right on both counts, but let’s add in doing yoga, traveling and scrapbooking. (Reading was the number one hobby–of course!).
At some point as a writer you have to make some assumptions and just take a guess at who your reader is. But doing a survey can offer great insight and a whole lot of fun! Here are the other results:

  • Nearly 60% of respondents were 40+ years old. I had been thinking my readers were 30-40, but now I’ll skew older.
  • 80% are Christians. I had hoped some non-Christians would be interested–it’s good to know they are.
  • 65% are married and 65% have children (not necessarily the same 65%).
  • All respondents had at least some college, with a third having earned a Bachelor’s Degree and nearly 20% with a Masters or better.
  • About 70% rated their finances as “comfortable,” while 23% are struggling a bit. The remaining 7% are cruising financially.