Book Signings & Book Marketing

I visited my local book store this weekend and was greeted by an author doing a book signing. I was in my own world and didn’t pay much attention, but once I settled in for some note writing I stopped and went over to chat for a minute. She had written two books, both for children/teens, and had them published through a local publisher, and was happy with the support they were providing. She talked about how it was really up to her to market the book, and this was part of how she was doing it.

The book signing seemed awkward. No event to drive people in to see her, no poster, just a small table, some books, and the author. She greeted everyone politely, most kept going, a few stopped to look. There was an additional challenge in that it was cash only,apparently the book isn’t carried by the book store. It was fun to watch a few sales get made,the proud (and justifiably so) signing the book and collecting the cash.

I think if you write a book, or anything else, it’s up to you to market it. No one will care about it as much as you do. Not every book is going to be a best seller, not every book is going to generate a line of adoring fans at the local book store. If you’re going to write a book you should invest some time deciding how much making a profit matters, and some more time thinking about how hard you’re willing to work at the work of selling it once you’ve written it.

That said, if you want to write something, write it. Making a profit is nice – perhaps really nice – but it’s not the most important thing.