Thursday, February 16, 2012

Breathless Reads Tour: Why Author Bookstore Appearances are so Important

I attended the Breathless Reads Tour last night at my local favorite bookstore Anderson's, which featured 4 YA authors: Andrea Cremer (Nightshade trilogy), Marie Lu (Legend), Beth Revis (Across the Universe, A Million Suns) and Jessica Spotswood (Born Wicked).

Hearing that Beth Revis vented frustration by writing character death scenes based on troublesome former students, and how she'd rather write about blow-ups than kissing, well it made me want to buy her book right then and there. I'd already marked Across the Universe on my To-Read list (and had even attempted to download the mp3 audiobook from the library, although iTunes refused to recognize it) but putting a face with an author name is what sold me.

Same with Andrea Cremer. I started Nightshade sometime last year and it wasn't my thing. But she's hilarious and insightful as a person, and meeting her made me want to give her books a second try.

Marie Lu was even cooler than I'd imagined, and I loved hearing how she designed video game graphics before writing full time. No wonder the action in Legend is so cool; she probably has vision related to gaming, taking the fast pace, first person experience and translating it on the page.

Jessica Spotswood has an intriguing sounding debut with Born Wicked, and her tiny voice brimmed with personality as she spoke about it.

I'd only read one book by the featured authors and I left the event with plans to read books by all of them. That's valuable contact for the authors! At least 3, if not all 4, of these authors have a strong online presence: active websites with blogs, twitter etc. But those in-store appearances really make a difference. Some attenders drove hours to be there, which is pretty typical occurance at Anderson's events. I'm spoiled because I live close, but it's noteworthy that teens and their moms, or full-time working adults, are willing drive several hours on a weeknight to meet an author.

For those of you who will eventually promote a book be encouraged!

1 comment:

  1. I think book store events can be really valuable too. I loved doing mine. The key when getting started, I think, is to do them where you know you have support. I did them here in Santa Fe where I live and know people, and back in my hometown. Then you can build on it - it's nice if you have friends with an in at a bookstore in their town and they make all their friends come :-)


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