The Essex Author Book Signing Event in June 2016 was my third author event, and as with the last two, there’s an element of excitement and trepidation coursing through me, and only when my table is set up do I feel ready to meet and greet readers.
I was really looking forward to meeting a reader I had connected with online. Emma (pictured below) had read six of my novels and was bringing the paperbacks with her for me to sign. Emma is one of those special readers who leaves reviews on Amazon – which is always helpful to authors, as the more reviews a book gets encourages Amazon to recommend it to other readers, apparently. Meeting Emma made my day very special and reminded me that readers are real people!
An author event isn’t just about selling books, it’s about meeting established and potentially new readers, and showing them you’re a real and approachable person, willing to connect with them regardless as to whether they have read one of your books or not.
Not everyone who approaches your table will purchase a book, but they may pick it up, read the book blurb, and discuss it with you. Some may say they want to look at all the other tables first, which is wise is funds are limited, whilst others may smile and leave. On several occasions at author events, readers will return to your table to purchase your book after thinking about it for a while. There is no need to rush into buying at these events.
I noticed after this event that my book sales on Amazon UK increased. Maybe this was coincidental, or maybe readers who visited my table decided to try my book after all. There is also the option of purchasing the Kindle version which is considerably cheaper, especially when trying a new author. I sold a mixture of Kindle and paperback – so your guess is as good as mine!
Author events are about making connections with readers and with other authors, who will hopefully become firm allies in the turbulent writing world. If you sell a few books, it’s a bonus!