Melanie Benjamin, author of Alice I Have Been, reflects on book tours, in an article for the Huffington Post. Especially the difference between the one she put together herself several years ago and the one she is currently doing with the help of her publisher.
“I’ve also learned to listen to my publisher. When a bookstore contacts me personally about an appearance, I pass the request on to my publicist. Only once did I ignore her advice and do an event anyway.
Only the janitor showed up.”
And this month’s issue of Christian Fiction Online Magazine features a great article by James Rubart and his recent book signing experiences.
Meanwhile, enjoy this hilarious YouTube video about a Waldenbooks signing:
HT: Shelf Awareness
Oh, my! I have been at some of those book signings!!
That’s one reason why getting published scares me. I don’t want to endure book signings!
I’m almost tempted to just keep dreaming and going no further.
Thanks for the other links. I’ll go check them out.
Love the YouTube and thanks for the laugh. I’ve been in that chair, only not in Waldenbooks. After an hour or so of trying to look welcoming and “sparkly,” my cheeks hurt.
Next time I’d come equipped with bookmarks, etc., even if I had to pay for their publishing.
I don’t know who said it first, but life truly is one long learning experience, isn’t it?
Ironically, I heard author Melanie Benjamin on the radio on our local talk radio station WGN Sunday afternoon while I was in my car. Very interesting discussion that centered on a lot of things, including how a few years ago when she was discouraged for not having any of her proposals picked up, she decided to write a book that seemed to be what pubs were looking for, and it sold as a two-book deal.
The first book had moderate success but not great, and she was feeling very uncomfortable because it was not a genre she was comfortable writing and “it wasn’t her.”
When she wrote her current book which is fiction based on historical fact about Louis Carroll and the girl who was the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland, she decided to not publish under her real name since she had such dismal numbers with her first book and didn’t want to be associated with it. Benjamin is one of her son’s first name. She combined her real first name with that for a pen name.
It was a very interesting interview.
I’ve been in that poor man’s shoes, just at Borders instead of WB. A very small house published my devotional books so every bit of publicity and PR was up to me. My first signing was great because I stacked it with lots of family and friends who hadn’t seen the book yet. 🙂 The next signing was an absolute bust. The store rep was so excited and promised to do so much … then transferred to another store within days of my signing. Drove 2 hours to get there and the staff had no idea I was coming. The only good thing about the day was my mom went with me so we had a great visit.
Live and learn …