What really worked this time? Finding the perfect site at our local library, a lovely, large, and adaptable conference room (capacity over 200). Set-up for the two-hour event took under 15 minutes (4 tables and chairs in informal groupings of 3-4, very easy to rearrange as folks arrived). I didn't know how many to expect and hoped for over 10 and was thrilled when 25 people arrived -- and stayed!
I really had fun AND assistance. Darling daughter staffed the sign-in/sales table. I brought artifacts for each of my books -- mermaid sculptures, travel journals, key reference books, and for Rivers of Stone, a neat replica of a woven belt worn by fur traders.
Roughly every 20 minutes, I talked about the background and read a short selection from one of my books (the audience decided which one), and passed around the artifacts related to that book, answering questions. We then held a drawing (for one of my books [4 different books] or one of two plants -- audience choice). Snacks? Two kinds of cookies. No beverages; no mess. We laughed, chatted, and had an amazingly wonderful time.
Compared to a formal reading at a bookstore, I found holding this kind of a launch party was more personal and more celebratory. I got to interact with all my wonderful friends who came and who are enthusiastic about my stories. What could be better?
What would I do differently? Not sure. I could have and should have taken more pictures. Next time, I'll ask someone to do this. As a frugal indie writer, I worked to keep costs down (about $40 for books, plants, and those cookies). The library conference room was free, and the library received a heartfelt thanks (and a book for their collection).
Announcements were posted in the local newspaper and online. Posters went up in the library and online. I also sent targeted e-mails and handed out printed invitations to different segments of people I knew (writers, swimmers, quilters), and was thrilled when folks from each group showed up.
Would 'bigger' have been 'better'? I don't think so.
|Quilting friends Twyla and CJ stopped by|
|Writing friends Caryl, Kate, Sue, and Dave from Spokane Authors|