Guest Post

Guest Chick: Tonya Kappes

Please join the Chicks in welcoming author Tonya Kappes, who writes a variety of series, including The Kenni Lowry Mystery Series, the Magical Cures Mystery Series, the Southern Ghostly Mystery Series, and The Campers and Criminals Cozy Mystery Series, just to name a few. Her most recent release is Forests, Fishing, and Forgery.


The internet. Specifically, social media. Oh…how it’s changed how me and my readers interact. Though it has been a really good thing, it’s also given me pause, but not  in the way you’re thinking.

The internet has really changed my life as an author. Instead of printing off my manuscript and sending it through the mail in a big fat yellow envelope, I can just zip it right on through by email to my editor.

Email.

Yep. That’s what I’m talking about. What happened to SNAIL MAIL???

Before the social media and even email craze, we had to actually handwrite letters, notes, and manuscript. We had to actually go to the post office and get stamps or weigh a package to mail.

Of course I thought it was GREAT to just be able to zip a reader back an email after they’d reached out to me by email. Though, each week, I’d scurry off to the post office and check my PO Box to retrieve all the fun reader mail I’d get. (I’m speaking years ago.) It was so much fun to head there and see what was waiting for me, with a thank you note at the ready to mail right back to them.

I’ve always valued my efforts and time I’d taken to get to know my readers. When someone mailed me a letter, I took the time to mail them back. It was one of the highlights of my week. Yes. I love getting emails from readers but there’s something to the hand-written notes with their signatures that made it so much more personal. That was and still is the connection I craved from my readers.

I didn’t go to college or get my master’s degree to become a writer. Nope. I was a child therapist.  I didn’t even start reading actual books for pleasure until my thirties. Long story for another time…but that’s when I discovered how much reading took me out of my real-life situation.

After many years and finally an established professional murderer…umm…in fiction of course, I wanted my readers to know how much I appreciated them. After all, they took the time to hand write me letters and I wanted to be sure they too loved getting mail, with a stamp, delivered by the post office. Not just a notification. YOU’VE GOT MAIL…

(You’re welcome for putting that sweet movie in your head. *wink*)

Anyways, I started to collect reader’s actual, physical mailings address. When I go on a trip (work or vacation), the first thing I do is go grab a handful of postcards. Immediately, while on the trip, I hand write a note to about 20 readers and tell them how much I appreciate them. I even keep a little black address book…now a few…that have their names and addresses.

Year after year, I receive cards from readers on my birthday. It truly is special because I LOVE MY BIRTHDAY! I’ll type that again for effect ~ I LOVE MY BIRTHDAY! And for a reader to even remember that since I don’t paste it all over social media, means a lot to me.

I wanted them to feel the same love on their birthdays like they’ve given me. That’s when I started doing the Mailbox Love where they fill out a form on my website to sign up for snail mail. Each week I get my little black address book out and add the new sign ups.

Each month, I sit down and hand write a happy birthday card to everyone who gave me their birthday months. Currently, I’m up to about 1500 a month birthdays and I love it! I love when I get the messages about how my card might be on the only card they get or the fact that I put a smile on their face when the post office delivered it. I love connecting with my readers more than just them reading my book!

It’s more than them buying a book written by me, it’s about knowing how much I truly cherish them as a reader because they made my dreams come true. Without them, I’d never have been able to quit my full-time job as a child therapist (which I loved) and do a job that’s my passion.

Currently, my Mailbox Love list is well over 10,000 strong and I hope when they get my note, it tells them how much I care.

Readers, what are your thoughts about snail mail? And please say hello to Tonya in the comments below.


For years, USA Today bestselling author Tonya Kappes has been publishing numerous mystery and romance titles with unprecedented success.

She is famous not only for her hilarious plot lines and quirky characters, but her tremendous marketing efforts that have earned her thousands of followers and a devoted street team of fans.

To learn more, please visit tonyakappes.com.

 

 

73 thoughts on “Guest Chick: Tonya Kappes

  1. Hi, Tonya…I love your books! I also love getting snail mail. It’s fun to see a hand-written envelope as I’m going through the day’s mail (and not the fake hand-written ones that some advertisers are using now). I always open it first.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. As my handwriting worsens even I have trouble reading what I have written. I too love snail mail for cards – I only have to sign my name – and can print the envelopes on my printer.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I have letters from deceased family members that I cherish! Receiving greeting cards and letters is something our grandchildren may never experience. So I have made a point of sending greeting cards with personal messages and post cards as well (when we travel) to my grandchildren.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I still like to receive handwritten cards in the mail. I loved writing letters to my pen pal when I was in middle school, and waiting for a response! I also love cursive handwriting which is becoming a lost art. Tonya, I really enjoyed book 2 in the camper series. Haven’t read book 1 yet. I’m out of order!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I love ALL of your books! Every one of your stories have taken me to a world outside of myself where my imagination is free to wander! My favorite thing is that you are a lovely Southern lady! I’ve read that you also do journaling (although I have no earthly idea where you find the time!), which I dearly love to do. There is just something about putting words down on paper! Being from the South, we’ve been taught that hand-written notes are not only the “polite” form of communication, but also the caring form. There is nothing like going to the mailbox and seeing a letter there that someone took the time to write and send to you. God bless your Southern roots!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Oh, to receive a letter is such a joy! I do miss them. I loved writing letters, sending little notecards to family and friends. After every birthday or Christmas, the first thing I did, and still do, is write a thank you note to the gift giver. It is how I was raised and I stressed that to my children as well. Saying thank you is polite, yet taking the time to write a thank you card means so much more.
    I still have letters from family and friends who have passed on. I have two address books filled with addresses of people that are no longer here. I just cannot take there names out! Weird, huh?
    I so enjoy your books! The cast of characters always brighten my day! Thank you for writting!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. ciao, in these years you can find in the mailbox near home only bills to pay! but when you see and have in your hand a snail mail (cards of holidays, envelopes with letters and pics…)… what a surprise and joy!!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Love, love, love getting snail mail. Books coming by snail mail are the best. Love ordering paperbacks from amazon and B&N online and getting them in my hot little hands to read. Love ebooks but paperbacks are still my favorite.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Hi Tonya!! I absolutely adore that you take the time to respond to your readers. This is one of the many reasons I love your books. You put your heart and soul into each and everything you do and it shows!! Thank you for brightening everyone’s day!

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Hello I love getting mail , love getting books in the mail I can order paperback from Harlequin at the same price or lower than getting an ebook from amazon .

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Tonya, what a lovely way to connect with your readers! We still send Christmas cards, and I have saved handwritten notes from loved ones, especially my late daddy, that mean so much to me. Thanks for hanging out with us today on the Chicks!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Love your camper series books😍
    I also enjoy reading about your daily life and family. You really appreciate your readers and let them know how important they are to you.
    I also enjoy your coffee☕️Pictures😊

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Tonya, thanks so much for visiting Chicks today! Love your post, and you have inspired me not to throw out all the beautiful blank notecards I have squirreled away, to send “someday.” I am, sadly, a lapsed correspondent, but my 2 daughters (and now my oldest grandchild) are big card writers. Friends and family always mention their thoughtful notes to me. I need to set a better example!

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Hi Tonya I love to send mail and also to receive it. I remember I used to not get any cards for my b-day when I was young and in my teens i was in a foster home and it was terrible so i do mail a lot of cards and birthday cards as I want no one to feel like i did . Peggy Clayton

    Liked by 2 people

  15. When I was a stay at home mom, I loved going to the mailbox. It was the highlight of my day, even if all we got were bills. I would say, “At least someone knows and cares if I’m alive, even if it is for money!”

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Hi Tonya, Haven’t started this series but have the first two in my TBR. Love to send cards, thank-you notes & just because. It is so unexpected nowadays but nice to receive.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I like to send a handwritten note on a fun or goofy postcard (I collect them when I’m traveling for this purpose) to thank folks when they’ve had me over for dinner. So few people send snail-mail thank you notes any more, so I try to keep up this wonderful, civilized tradition.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Like some of the others who have commented, my penmanship has gone from bad to worse. However, I still love snail mail and send my share of cards (where I can get away with only a short personal note on the bottom and a signature) for birthdays and other special events. The number of birthday cards you send each month is mind-staggering!

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Hi Tonya! I’m with you… I really love getting snail mail, though I don’t get much of it these days. I don’t think I’ve ever really considered sending authors snail mail, though I’m not sure why. I guess I never considered you all would have a physical mailing address available online. I love your Camper & Criminals series and look forward to moving on to your others when I’m caught up with those!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Hiya, Tonya, I’m glad you put the link on your FB page, this is a cool site and I wouldn’t have found it on my own. I too love snail mail, life is getting to be way too techie for me, I prefer the old school way of life. I love your books and the little messages you leave on your pages. You are an inspiration to everyone who reads your books and knows even a little about you. YOU ROCK!.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Tonya, I love your books! I enjoy getting snail mail also and the birthday post card is a nice surprise at birthday time. It is so nice that you take the time to address and send all those cards each month and keeping the post office in business. I also like your Facebook posts with pics of sweet Charlie and Scooter and how they are doing and the info on your new releases.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Love this so much, Tonya! Don’t know how you manage to write all those cards AND write all those books too. You’re amazing.

    I love getting handwritten snail mail too. Especially letters and cards. My mom makes the most beautiful cards–she has such an artistic gift–I have saved every one she ever sent.

    Thanks for visiting us. xo

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Your guest post was delightful to me. It’s obvious you have a heartfelt appreciation of your readers & followers. I cherish the books you write! And, have followed you and your writing for some time. I also feel warmth for the ways you show your family, friends, and furbabies love & concern. Thanks for being such an all-around caring individual!

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Hi Tonya,
    I’m a huge fan of snail mail. It’s so much more personal.For years I had penpals all over the world. I wonder if they still do that. Great way to learn about other cultures.
    It seems like cozy authors are a lot like soap actors. Humble & appreciative of their fans. Makes me glad to love cozies.
    Looking forward to reading Campers & Criminals series. Lived in an RV full time for trs & we are considering going back to it.
    Thanks for letting us get to know a little about you.

    Like

  25. I like snail mail letters, because I can mail those from the convenience of my home. Just pop it in the mailbox and put the flag up. But packages where I have to go to the post office? I only get out about once a week for those. I’ve toyed with the idea of getting a PO Box, but I just don’t think it’d be worth the cost.

    Like

  26. Snail mail is the best! Interestingly, I always read emails from real people, aka friends, first; then the rest of it but save snail mail from friends to read (savor) last! Bless you for swnding out all those cards! Looking forward to the next Roxy escapde! Will have to get book ones in the other series going soon. Thank you!!

    Like

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