What To Expect At A Book Signing?
One of the most thrilling moments for an author is when they are invited to participate in a book signing. This is often the stamp of approval many writers need, especially with their first book.
Most bookstores see a book signing as a means of increasing foot traffic and promoting a sense of connectedness with the writing community. Most bookstore owners are open to the idea of providing time, space and promotion for a book signing.
From a writers perspective this should be a gold mine in promotion. Bookstore owners will often post notices announcing the book signing; many will also provide announcements in regional newspapers that are designed to promote the book signing.
Bring comfortable shoes and your favorite pen. Then enjoy your moment in the sun.
However, unless you are a well-established author there are a few things that you should not expect from a book signing.
A waiting line.
The sale of a significant amount of books.
The truth is a book signing will likely result in a few friends, family and an assortment of curious others who have come to have you personally sign their purchased copy of the book.
So, if that’s all there is to it, why do it?
Well, primarily because as a writer you should consider yourself a ‘word farmer’. What I mean by that is a book signing can be a wonderful time to visit with the general public about your book, its subject matter and why you chose to write the book and be willing to wait to see the seed sprout.
In many cases, positive contacts with those who do not purchase your book may ultimately find these patrons returning to purchase the book at a later date.
A book signing isn’t about ‘hawking your wares’ it is about good will and being an ambassador for the craft of writing.
If you have been invited to participate in a book signing do so with good grace and with an eye toward the long-term goals you have in writing. A book signing is simply one small step toward your ultimate destination, enjoy the step, but don’t make too much fuss over it.
There is some form of ego in every writer, but a book signing isn’t a good place to don a prima donna persona. Remember the people who come to see you want to leave with something positive to consider – not an author to avoid.