My famiSandiShelton-jlb-11-06-08-6326fly keeps laughing at me when I explain to them that I am actually on a book tour right now and therefore should be treated with the utmost respect.

But I am.

It’s just not a tour of bricks-and-mortar bookstores, where I put on decent clothes and stand up in front of a microphone and read from my book, the way I did when this picture was taken back in November. (My friend Judy Barbosa took this picture of me reading at R. J. Julia Booksellers in Madison.)

Trust me, this is NOT how I dress for a virtual book tour. Right now, for instance, I am wearing a stained, torn sweatshirt with yoga pants, mismatched socks, and mucklucks. My hair does not look like it does in this picture.

So, for those of you who don’t know and who keep asking me what I’m talking about, a virtual book tour is where I go visit people’s blogs and web sites. They invite me over and let me either post something about my book on the blog, or else answer their questions, or get interviewed by them. It gets posted, and then I go back and answer comments and questions that their readers have.

What is the point of this, you ask? I can hear you asking this.

As with any book tour, it’s to get information out there about my new book, to bring it to the attention of people who might not have bumped into it in their regular lives. Some of the blogs I’ll be visiting are often visited by readers looking for new books–and it’s good to get to tell them about mine.

I didn’t create my own virtual book tour. A young woman named Jaime Sylver, who works for www.pumpupyourbookpromotion, run by Dorothy Thompson, made all the contacts and the calls and recruited bloggers who might be interested in having me come for a visit. I’ll be doing this all month, and linking to the blogs where I have landed.

Today, for instance, I wrote a guest post for The Plot, in which I interviewed Nate, the main male character of Kissing Games of the World. Even though I thought I knew him very well, having spent the past year writing about him, I actually learned a few things in the interview. You can read the interview with him here.

I have to say, it’s fun being on tour this way. Last time I did it–back when A Piece of Normal came out, I made lots of new friends in the blogosphere.

And that’s the best part of all. That, and not having to put on real clothes.