Lesbian Romance and Sapphic Fiction: Insights from Ylva Authors – Part 2

Hey, fabulous folks! Today, we’re wrapping up an awesome two-part series where we hang out with some of the absolute best-selling authors of lesbian romances! Jae, Lee Winter, Clare Lydon, and Harper Bliss are letting us in on their creative secrets and the nuggets of wisdom they’ve picked up along the way.

If you haven’t caught the first part yet, no worries – check it out here (we dished on genres, tropes of sapphic fiction, and the wild world of social media!). Now, we’re diving into the juicy stuff, talking newsletters and must-have resources for writers. Stick around for some fantastic advice on writing and getting your work out there from these incredibly successful women-loving-women authors! Whether you’re a bookworm or a wordsmith, this interview series is your backstage pass to the wonderful world of lesbian fiction, so make sure you don’t miss a beat!


A topic that often comes up in marketing for authors is newsletters. And it’s no different when it comes to sapphic fiction, right? Do you have one? Could you share some wisdom on that subject?

Lee Winter Marketing Tips

Lee Winter: I have a newsletter but no real wisdom on it! I write one about every one or two months. Their value to authors is simply to have a direct way to tell readers about one’s author news. Why? Not everyone’s on social media. Plus, social media may fall over or change its rules in some restrictive/censoring way, so it’s best to have a way to circumvent social media if needed. Think of newsletters as a nice way to connect with readers—and insurance for a post-social-media apocalypse!

Clare Lydon Marketing Tips

Clare Lydon: My newsletter is one of my best forms of marketing, and something I put a lot of effort into. I’ve built it up mostly organically since my third book release, and I give away a sapphic novella when readers sign up. I email every other week with news of what I’m writing and reading, as well as any other news, along with sales, podcasts, interviews, and all of that. I also ask my audience a question every week, and get a lot of engagement, which I love. My newsletter is a great direct link with my readers, which I cherish. If authors don’t have one, they should set one up right away.

Jae Marketing Tips

Jae: Aside from my Facebook group, my newsletter is my most important tool for communicating with readers and keeping them up-to-date on any book news.

My tips for a newsletter are:

  • Start one as early as possible. This should be your number one priority aside from writing a great book. Unlike social media, this is a platform you control. No one can close your account or limit your reach by changing an algorithm.
  • Have a welcome email to introduce yourself to readers.
  • Send a newsletter at least once a month so your readers don’t forget who you are and unsubscribe.
  • Subscribe to a few author newsletters to find out what style of newsletter you, as a reader, enjoy.
  • Familiarize yourself with data protection laws such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and make sure you protect your subscribers’ privacy.

Harper Bliss Marketing Tips

Harper Bliss: Yes, I do have a newsletter, and I find it the best tool for maintaining a direct line of communication with my readers. It allows me to share updates about my work, upcoming projects, and insights into my writing process. For anyone considering starting a newsletter, consistency is key. I send one every other week.

I’ve also offered a couple of free books to new subscribers since I started my newsletter more than a decade ago, and that still works well. Try to always overdeliver (like telling new subscribers they’ll get two free books, then give them three or four.)


Do you have any resources you could recommend for authors who want to improve their reach? It doesn’t have to be specifically focused on the lesbian romance market, just books, blogs, podcasts, or creators that post relevant and reliable content? 

Lee Winter: I’m all about the Facebook groups. I’m in some for fellow authors where we help each other out; some for readers, to hear what they’re into; one for listeners (don’t neglect your lesfic audiobook following!); and one for Aussies and Kiwis, to share books amongst my own tribe.

I also think agreeing to interviews and podcasts is another way to get your name out there. So, if someone asks, do consider saying yes!

One other interesting option that not many authors do is to have a Pinterest page. Mine  shows all the inspiration for people and places I gather when I’m researching a book. I’m very visual, so I gather a heap of pics. When a book is finished, I open up the page for that book to the public. It’s a fun way of using all the material I’ve gathered anyway, and it can be a great thing to share with your readers, especially via newsletter.

Clare Lydon: I host a podcast with my friend and fellow author TB Markinson called Lesbians Who Write. Every week, we discuss a topic, and we’ve got nearly 200 episodes under our belt, so go binge them if you want to find out how to write and publish a book.

I also always recommend Ylva author Jae, who has some great resources on her website. Plus, Joanna Penn is another fab port of call if you want to find out more about self-publishing. She has a podcast and websitethat I’d recommend.

Jae: There are so many options! Here are a few I would recommend:

Free places to help promote your sapphic books:







Harper Bliss: Since the very beginning of my self-publishing journey, I’ve followed and listen to Joanna Penn. I have learned so much from her, and I love that she’s so positive and always looks to the future.

I’ve recently started doing Facebook ads again, and Mal and Jill Cooper’s book Help! My Facebook Ads Suck has been a great help and is an excellent starting point for anyone wanting to give them a go.

And that’s Part 2 for you! We’re thrilled to have explored the distinctive realm of sapphic fiction. Thank you, Clare Lydon, Harper Bliss, Lee Winter, and Jae for your fantastic insights!

Navigating this unique niche is a journey, and hearing from best-selling lesbian romance authors is an incredible opportunity to delve into the nuances of publishing lesbian romances. We hope you thoroughly enjoyed this concluding installment!

If you happened to miss the first part, catch up on the excitement right here in Part 1!  Happy reading and stay tuned for more on the Ylva Blog!


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