Monday, May 23, 2016

How to Host a Fun Book Launch PAR-TAY

So right outta the gate I'm makin' the disclaimer that I had no earthly idea how to host a book launch party 'cause this is my first rodeo. What I did know is that I wanted the PAR-TAY to reflect the unique style of my book and I wanted my guests to have fun. So I set about doing research and reading blogs how other people hosted successful book launches. After gathering loads of information and advice this is what worked for me and hopefully will help other new authors on their journey:
 
1. Preorder plenty of books well in advance of the target date for your launch party. I find myself selling books at the gym, grocery store, and in my neighborhood so I always keep a box in my car. Be sure to have a good supply on hand for the actual party.
2. Choose a venue reflective of your personality or that relates to your book. Since I had already decided to go nontraditional and not hold my launch in a book store (shocking I know), I needed to find a cool restaurant/bar. My friend Beth and I devoted a day to take a "field trip" around town to check out spaces. As soon as I walked in to The Bento Box and saw the modern couches that matched my book cover I was sold. I even bought an animal print throw to put over the couch for the main event. 
3. Enlist the help of friends. I delegated various responsibilities to my friends, all of whom were happy to help. This takes some of the stress off you.


4. Figure out a way to accept credit cards. I download the Square App and practiced with the card reader well in advance of the event. However, there were serious glitches at the restaurant. I don't know if it was the wifi or what, but it took a village to figure out all of that mess. Since I'm basically computer illiterate, I left that to the experts while I greeted guests and took a Xanax. 
5. Get plenty of change for cash purchases and don't forget to charge tax. Yea, my CPA reminded me of that buzz kill.
6. Depending on your budget, you may want to provide food. Since my event was a drop in from 5:30-7:30 I did provide appetizers, but I think that is personal preference.
7. Bring plenty of pens because you will be signing books all night.

8. Send out your invitation via social media and allow your friends to invite others. I was fortunate to have friends of friends attend my event who actually purchased books. I also sent my invitation to media outlets and it was advertised in several magazines as well as the local newspaper.
9. Have a few door prizes and draw winners every 30 minutes. Again this is optional, but it makes things extra special.
10. Practice a little welcome speech and select a reading from your book to engage the crowd. Looks like my "fun" mission was accomplished. I sure do love to put a smile on folks' faces!
 



 
 



24 comments:

  1. Looks like you had an awesome time! And more fun than in any bookstore, that's for sure.

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    1. It was certainly uniquely me, and that was my goal.

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  2. so what you is sayin' is that your gym trainer, your grocer and halfa ya neighbourhood have your book? :)
    Now, doesn't that dress look good on you, Debs, but why isn't it red like on the cover?

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    1. Dezzy I did buy a red dress online especially for the PAR-TAY but when it arrived it was a hideous orange/rust color. OH THE HORROR!!!!!! So, I went with the blue one in my closet that matched the blue font on the cover.

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  3. Looks like fun. I went to a book release (it was a paperback release) for a local artist at a local bookstore in which there were cheap shots of whiskey and wine ($2) and before the reader began, he gave away two six-packs of beer (PBR's) saying he wanted to ensure a fun crowd. It was a fun evening and I'll be reviewing his book soon. You'll have to let me know if you do another reading in ILM area later in the summer in case I'm there.

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    1. Now that is my kind of book release! I will definitely let you know if I'm doing any more events in Wilmington.

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  4. I really need to buy one but I want my signed by you!!
    You look amazing and I'm so proud of you. I bet that was a super fun party.

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  5. Looks like such a great time! I would have popped in if you were closer, girl!

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    1. It was a great time. One day I really want to come to Canada.

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  6. Looks like it went awesome indeed. That is a great idea with the credit card. Tax? What's that? What they don't know won't hurt them, right? haha

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    1. Yea lots of people paid with a credit card so I'm so glad my expert friends got that worked out. Pesky taxes are truly a buzz kill.

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  7. I am so happy for you to have this fun experience in your life. It looks like a huge success. But, of course, it would be because you have tons of friends and are tons of fun. (I know this because I have been following your blog and past "Par-tays" for quite awhile) Congrats on the book!!!

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    1. Thank you so much Cheryl. I do try to put the "F" in fun.

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  8. Well, it sounds like you've got it down pat! I'm also glad to hear I'm not the only one that keeps a box of books in his car. And if it says anything, we've sold plenty of boxes worth of books via cash, sans tax, and never had Uncle Sam show up at our doorsteps with a torch and a pair of brass knuckles.

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    1. Sssshhhhh I have sold plenty of books out of my car for cold hard cash too and never charged tax either. I just played by the rules because it was a public event.

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  9. Eep!! A LIST!! All the way up to the #10 with lots of great advice. Girl, you're making me swoon. Lol From the soubd of things, it looks like it went great!

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  10. What a great idea! Maybe I'll try it.

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  11. A good way to get buzz is a big sign that says "Free beer"


    how to clear a crowd away: a sign that says "Alcohol-Free Beer"

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  12. Love it! Way to get out there and make it happen! I think that would be best way to launch a book--especially if there was food. I'm thinking cheese. Yup. Definitely cheese.

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  13. Great tips. Looks like a lovely launch. Must say that dress is stunning and the book looks pretty tempting.

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