— Lynnette Phillips (@LynnettesBooks) April 29, 2014
by Lynnette Phillips
Sponsor an event instead of a simple book signing. Think an interactive author appearance…engage your audience and connect with readers.
As long as you’re at it, why confine your event to a bookstore? Why not approach a local hardware store, gift shop or library branch to host your event? You can even leave some of your autographed books there on consignment.
Events can get boring too so here are 10 suggestions of things you might use to make your event more fun:
- Make the event an event by asking another author (or two) from the area to join you and you can combine your events.
- Don’t just read from your book tell a story about writing it or what inspired you. Share an anecdote or two about the experience.
- Devise a quiz or contest for the audience. Test their knowledge of your subject or the contents of one of your previous books.
- Have you considered a presentation or slideshow…maybe a video. If you have a book trailer why not present it? Talk about any upcoming events.
- I’ve read fiction that has blended known songs into the story. Create a playlist that goes along with the novel.
- You might write DIY or non-fiction books or even include a recipe or special treat in your story. Try a simple demo or share the results of the recipe with the audience.
- Ask someone to interview you. Invite a friend or colleague who knows your book and writing to be up there with you.
- If you have a sequel in the works don’t forget to share the news and deliver a teaser or two.
- Offer refreshments but keep it simple. One author I know uses candy kisses. I just completed a book wherein the main character and her Italian family grew olives and pressed the oil. For that author I would suggest sharing a variety of olives or a selection of different olive oils and pointing out the varied tastes and qualities.
- After the interview offer a Q&A session and stick around to sign books, chat and mingle.
Whatever you decide on don’t forget to promote the occasion prior to the day. Make sure you have a couple of posters to display on the day of the event. Also, be sure to have plenty of business cards, bookmarks or flyers on display. And remember, if you’re planning a visit to another area you can plan ahead and offer an event there too.