Montana Author T.L. Hines to Share Book Royalties with Readers

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Debut novelist will give 10% of his first royalty statement to readers in December, saying the idea was inspired by the open source software movement.

Novelist T.L. Hines announced he will share 10% of his first royalty statement for his debut work 'Waking Lazarus' with 100 readers who sign up at his web site ( as Volunteer Book Publicists.

"I was inspired, in part, by the open source software movement," says Hines. "The whole idea of a community of people working together for a common goal -- and sharing the success -- appealed to me. This was my way of applying that open source mindset to the worlds of fiction and publishing, and helping support the launch of my first novel."

In return for signing up, Volunteer Publicists receive inside information about the novel, including a companion e-booklet with deleted scenes and extra commentary, a look at the novel's marketing plan, a photo tour of the novel's setting, interactive forums, and more. Each time users post ideas at the website or email the author with updates, they receive points. Hines sees the effort benefitting not only his work, but also the work of other authors and novelists. "Of course I'm doing this to promote my book," he says. "But I'm also opening the door and sharing what I do. I hope it will generate ideas for other authors trying to market their own work."

In December, the 100 people with the highest point totals will be named "Most Valuable Publicists" (MVPs), and split 10% of the author's first royalty statement. Hines guarantees a minimum of $2,000 will go to MVPs. In addition, one Volunteer Publicist has won a role in the next novel, and another, chosen at random, will win an iPod Nano loaded with a Waking Lazarus iMix of songs. Not surprisingly, the web site Hines maintains for Volunteer Publicists runs on open source software: Drupal. "I'm a geek wannabe," Hines admits.

So far, Hines reports success for the Volunteer Publicist project. "About 400 people have signed up--everyone from students to homemakers to librarians to booksellers. And the novel went into its second printing in a matter of weeks." The book has earned critical praise, as well, including a prestigious starred review in Library Journal and more than 30 five-star ratings at Amazon.

Hines says he plans to continue the project to help support the launch of his next novel, 'The Dead Whisper On,' due on shelves summer of 2007. "But it's not too late to sign up for the first book," he adds. "I think anyone can still crack that top 100 with a little bit of effort."

About TL Hines

TL Hines has been an advertising agency owner/principal, a trade magazine editor, and now a novelist: 'Waking Lazarus,' his first novel, released summer of 2006. He currently lives in Montana with his wife and daughter. As a teen, he was an undefeated 3-0 in air guitar competitions, in which he performed songs by ZZ Top.

About 'Waking Lazarus'

Jude Allman has died--and returned to life--three times. Now, to stop a killer, he'll have to unravel the mysteries of his own deaths.

Fiction: Mystery and Suspense/Supernatural Thriller

Cloth Hardcover: $18.99

Bethany House Publishers

ISBN 0764202049

"Readers who consider most faith thrillers too tame should find this satisfactorily chilling." - Publishers Weekly

(Starred Review) "A first rate work...Highly Recommended." - Library Journal

"[A] well-paced suspense narrative populated by dynamic characters." - Kirkus Discoveries

More than 30 five-star reviews at Amazon:

Media Contacts at Bethany House Publishers:


Brett Benson



Linda White



Jim Hart



Ellen Graf

519-886-6262 ext.4201

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