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I’m Published! Now What? An Author’s Guide to Creating Successful Book Events, Readings, and Promotions

By Jeffrey Copeland

Reprinted from the Summer 2016 issue of the Authors Guild Bulletin

One of the greatest milestones of a writer’s life is when word comes that a piece long worked on—often with blood, sweat, and tears thoroughly mixed together—will be published. It does not matter if the work is published by a mainstream publisher or self-published through one of the many e-publishers/e-retailers. What matters most is the creative effort has found a home and will be available for others to read and enjoy—a culmination of all the background research, composing, revising, editing, and formatting. The pure joy and overwhelming euphoria, the satisfaction of accomplishment (add drum roll and fireworks here) all come together to make the experience one never to be forgotten. This period of practically floating on air all too soon gives way as hard reality sets in, typically in the form of the question: “I’m published! Now what?”

The “Now what?” that follows is often the most important consideration of all. The “Now what?” is the long road to achieving successful book readings, events, and promotions. These are the lifeblood of any new publication, and without these, your hard-earned work can quickly wither and die on the bookshelves. Basically, this is the age-old question: “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it still make a sound?”

In fact, there is a lot an author can do to make sure the work “makes a sound.”

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The full article INCLUDES:

How to Set Up a Book Event

Unless a book has incredible advance sales or the author is very well known (and many times not even then) bookstores are not going to contact an author to do a book event. How then, do you get yourself into the stores?

What Makes a Bookstore Event Successful?

From the initial planning stages through the book events themselves, perhaps no other group has the range of insight into what authors do to create successful appearances than bookstore event coordinators. What follows are voices of experience, offered by event coordinators from independent bookstores around the country.


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Photo credit: Books by fotologic licensed CC by 2.0