Thank you for visiting Mystery Book Promotions, your source for information about promoting mystery books on our family of websites.

We've created this page to provide an overview on what options are available to you for promoting your mystery book on our websites and to answer frequently asked questions. If you need additional information, or have a question not answered here, please feel free to contact us at

We have two different promotions available: (1) A mystery book contest; and (2) Mystery author interviews. Each of these is discussed in more detail below.

We are also pleased to participate in mystery author virtual tours, by posting information about the author, reviewing the author's featured book, or whatever else may be suggested by the tour director.

Mystery Book Contest

For our contest site, we try to do something a little different from a simple book giveaway. You can visit the current page here <>. We prefer signed copies of an author’s book, but it isn’t a strict requirement. And there is no requirement for the format of the book (i.e. mass market paperbacks are acceptable). But we do try to put together a “prize package” that includes the mystery book and something else that is special and different.

Many authors have other interests and some of our most popular prizes have featured a combination of a book and something that represents that other interest. Don Bruns and Corey Lynn Fayman, for example, are both accomplished musicians. Prize packages featuring their books also included a CD of their music. Gerard Bianco designs jewelry; for his package, he custom crafted a pendant to include with his book.

It's also fun to put together a prize package that includes something from the mystery being promoted. Hailey Lind's mysteries feature faux finisher Annie Kincaid; a faux finishing kit was included in her prize package. Michelle Gagnon included a set of runes that were mentioned in her mystery as part of the prize.

Winners always like to receive complete sets of books in a series. Diane Killian provided signed copies of all three books in the Poetic Death series; Lori Avocato did the same for her books in the Pauline Sokol series. These were very popular with the recipients.

These are just some of the creative ideas that authors, their publicists, or their publishers have come up with in the past. We’re open to suggestions! Again, the only cost associated with this promotion is the cost of shipping the prize package to us and any costs associated with the contents of the package. The time frame for the contest is generally from 6 to 8 weeks and attracts an audience with between 600 and 1000 unique visitors registering. This number has been growing 10-15% with each succeeding contest which seems to indicate its increasingly popularity.

Mystery Author Interviews

This is something new for us, and we're really just getting started. We have completed a few interviews that are accessible from our Mysterious Reviews website (<>. We provide a list of written questions to which the author responds. A short biography is also included. In addition to publishing the interview on our site, we will also provide excerpts on Mystery Books News (<>.

Contact Information

Our sweepstakes and contests are operated by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books which is registered with and licensed to do business in the State of California. (Note: we are relocating so will be establishing a new business relationship in the state where we establish residency.)

If you are interested in participating in either our sweepstakes or contests (or both), please contact:

Lance Wright
Hidden Staircase Mystery Books
1164 Linden Circle
Beecher IL 60401

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few questions that are often asked:

Why should an author promote their mystery with you?

Our sweepstakes and contests are accessible from our entire family of mystery websites (see the menu bar on the left side of this page for a list). Every month, thousands of mystery lovers visit our sites for many different reasons, and we want to give them an opportunity to learn more about the authors and books that are featured in our contests and sweepstakes.

What's the difference between a sweepstakes and a contest?

From a practical standpoint, there is little difference. According to California law (under which our contests and sweepstakes are operated), a sweepstakes is any procedure for distributing anything of value by lot or chance. A contest is any game, puzzle, scheme, or plan which offers prospective participants the opportunity to receive or compete for gifts or prizes on the basis of skill or skill and chance. The "skill" part of our contests come in the form of a trivia question; the question must be answered correctly for the entrant to be eligible.

However, to discourage automated entries, we added a trivia question to our sweepstakes as well so legally it too is considered a contest.

Speaking of automated entries, how do you prevent them?

We can't, but our rules specifically prohibit them and we haven't had a problem with them. All entries are downloaded and checked for eligibility.

Why are the sweepstakes and contests daily entry?

We want to keep the author's name and book in the public eye as much as possible for as long as possible. Much like advertising, if someone sees something often enough they are more likely to check it out. There's no additional overhead on our part to process single entries or daily entries, so we go with daily entries.

What do you do with the names and e-mail addresses of the people who enter?

With the exception of the randomly selected winner, nothing. California law requires us to keep them for a specified period of time and therefore they are simply archived. The name and e-mail address of the selected winner is used to notify them that they have won a prize; it is not used for any other purpose.

If you have a question that isn't answered here, please contact us at