Thursday, November 18, 2010

In Store booksignings and me

A lot of authors hate nothing more than the dreaded booksigning.

Being a writer is an introverted profession, perfectly suited for those who like to sit in their study, surrounded by papers, typing away. They might come up for air once or twice a day, and blink nervously to notice that the sun is out or that the rain is pouring off the trees, and get up to fix something to eat. Then it’s back to the keyboard, dripping bagel crumbs into the keys.

And then, once the book is finished and published, it’s time to promote it.

A seemingly endless round of visits to boookstores and libraries and book clubs. Where you meet with people and smile and chat happily about your book.
It seems unfair somehow: I know writers for whom the whole meet-the-public thing is a nightmare. Some writers just can’t do it. Their sales suffer accordingly.

For some reason, unknown to me, I love it. And I am pretty good at it. Sure, sometimes you feel like a total smuck standing there with a stupid smile on your face while everyone rushes past, eyes averted. And you meet some pretty rude people.

But all-in-all you meet a lot of interesting people who love books and would just LOVE to give yours a try or think it would be PERFECT for Great-Aunt-Alice’s Christmas present.

I am very very good at in-store signings. Don’t take my word for it – I’ve been told several times that I am the best author they’ve ever had in. No kidding. One bookseller told me I could give classes in how to do it.

It’s not rocket science – all you have to do is engage the potential readers. Smile, say Hi, ask an opening question and if the response to that is good, then ask if you can tell them about your books. You definitely need something to hand them – bookmark, postcard, flyer - not only does it begin a relationship, but if they really are too busy right now you want them to have something to remind them to come back, don’t you?

My number one rule for bookstore signings: NEVER NEVER sit down. It creates a distance between you and the potential buyer and restricts your ability to move around the store or the immediate area.

We all have different ways of approaching this. Just a couple of tips about what works for me.

Want to see me in action?

No comments:

Post a Comment