Dear Mia & Sugar,
I want to attend a book signing(s), but there are SO many types to choose from. I must admit—I am overwhelmed and am in need of book signing advice.
How do you decide which are best to attend? Should I spend money to travel on a cruise, to a big event with models, or keep my eye out for something smaller?
I would be traveling alone, and it seems like everyone knows one another on social media already. While I occasionally comment in groups or like posts, I haven’t made that connection. I’m so excited to attend, especially when I see such great #TitanStrong friendships that come out the other side.
What’s a girl to do when she doesn’t know which type of signing is the right one and is uncertain about meeting online people in real life?
A Semi-Introverted Bookworm
Dear Bookworm, (’Cause really, don’t all bookworms have a few introverted tendencies?)
Hello, I’m Carmen—also known as the Princess with Team Titan—and I’m here to share my book signing advice. Mia is busy with the little ones and making her favorite dinner for their crew, and Jared asked Sugar to meet him at GUNS.
But I am happy to say that I share your love of books and am excited to give my two cents!
First off, make sure you’re a part of Team Titan! It’s a Facebook group filled with readers just like the two of us. This is a great way to make a connection with a Titan sister or two.
Consider stopping by a Team Titan meetup or having coffee with a local friend from our group. Starting close to home with a small group of familiar romance readers then building up would be less intimidating than a large group.
The Titan locator file is available for you to check out your area and see if there are any Titan sisters listed that live close by. Please make sure to add your name to the list as well! If you have any problems when you first join, write a post and tag Danyella. She’s in charge of all things group-orientation related.
Now that you don’t have to go to a book signing alone, I’d love to remind you that every day, we face situations that nudge us to be brave!
LITTLE STEPS CAN MAKE HUGE PROGRESS
- Like posts and other readers’ comments
- Share a book recommendation or your review of Cristin’s books. Others will join in and add on to your post!
- Don’t be afraid to speak up in our Titan group. That’s a great way to introduce yourself!
- Attend a small gathering at first and learn your comfort level
MY SECOND THOUGHT — SIZE MATTERS
Great things happen at small gatherings! I have been lucky enough to meet Cristin at a very small book signing. The quality of time we were able to have was priceless. With the larger signings, I always feared that I would feel like a head of cattle. You know? Just a number, standing in line for my two minutes with the author.
I’m not an author, but I think it would be safe to say that they might not be keen on this format either. Yet it’s an opportunity to get their names out there, meet new readers, and make small connections with their fans. Because of this, many authors hold luncheons or dinners at larger events. In my opinion, those opportunities are much more satisfying to both the author and reader alike.
As far as attending cruise trips or events that models attend, I would suggest that you ask yourself if you’ve ever purchased a book strictly because of the cover model. Do always buy books with a specific cover model no matter the content?
Then ask yourself if you buy books because of the author, the blurb, or the buzz on social media. Models can be fantastic people. They work hard to keep themselves photo-shoot ready, and at times, their dedication and hard work isn’t appreciated. They make connections with photographers and authors, and promote themselves and their covers as an added bonus for the author.
LIKE MANY AUTHORS, MANY COVER MODELS ENJOY MEETING FANS AND BUILDING FRIENDSHIPS IN THE BOOK WORLD
Many signings have models in attendance. It’s fun to meet them. Just remember your manners and be respectful! They’re people with feelings and lives like the rest of us. (Yes, Mia just yelled to include that, and she’s right!)
A WORD OF CAUTION: NEVER ATTEND A BOOK SIGNING IF YOU CAN’T AFFORD IT
I would rather purchase books by my favorite authors and read them with lights on and heat in my house rather than sit in my cold, dark bedroom, hoping my Nook doesn’t run out of its battery charge because I attended a signing that strapped me financially.
AS FOR TRAVELING ALONE? ONLY YOU KNOW IF YOU CAN DO THAT.
Some people love it, and others feel safer when going with someone else. Only you can make that call. I do know that Sugar would tell you to always be aware of your surroundings and talk to the flight attendants so they remember you. Let them know of your unease if you’re alone; they’ll try to stick close to you.
Don’t be afraid to ask for directions if you’re in an airport and unsure of where to go, and definitely use that GPS if you’re driving. Make pit stops in well-lit areas and always be aware of your gas tank level. It’s good to know the general direction of where you’re going by using a map instead of just relying on GPS.
Again, reach out to your Titan sisters in the group and ask if anyone else is attending an event that you might have your eye on!
MY ULTIMATE BOOK SIGNING ADVICE IS TO BE BRAVE!
Make a conscious effort to put yourself out there with your Titan sisters. Don’t be shy! Team Titan is one of the best things to happen to a lot of women in the group. If you find that you gravitate to a couple of people in Titan, agree with their points of view, or enjoy their senses of humor, reach out to them. Whether you comment more to them in posts, or private message them, please do so! We’re a pretty great group!
Team Titan Members Join Together to Visit Other Authors, too – Kallypso Masters
Remember, as with any relationship, the more work and effort you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it. You have to put yourself out there so others can get to know the real you! Be open and honest, supportive and kind, and you’ll find others in the group that you can form lasting friendships with!
Before you know it, you’ll be able to contact one or more of them with the simple words “Road Trip,” and you’ll be off on another new adventure!
Cristin Harber says
Thanks for sharing, Carmen! I love your pics with a few of my favorite authors too! xo
Hey Princess! Thanks for always giving us your pearls of wisdom! I’m an extreme introvert and last year I decided to, as you mentioned, put myself out there, and I traveled to go to a Dinner with Authors event just because Cristin was going to be there. I did it and I still can’t believe It! What helped me make that decision even though I was terrified? There were 3 other girls (Anna, Marion and Debbie) from the Team Titan group that I already interacted with very frequently and they were going as well. One of them even picked me up from the airport! So, even though I traveled alone, I had support from other friends and I achieved my ultimate goal of meeting Cristin!
Cristin Harber says
Hi, Vanessa! I’m so glad you did! You hold such a special place in my heart. 🙂
Janet Griscavage says
I have wondered how to go about attending a book signing when you purchase digital copies only? I have downsized and have only digital copies of books? I know author’s make some if their money from the purchase of a signed book. What is the protocol or etiquette on this please?
Cristin Harber says
That’s a great question, Janet!
Truthfully, you should know that in most cases, an author’s first priority isn’t the income from signed books. It’s always nice to sell out (so you don’t have to bring books home!). We’re there to meet you and your friends, have a great time, get our name and titles in front of new folks, and put real life faces to online profile pics.
As for etiquette, a smile and a hello, handshake, or a hug work well at book signings, all dependent on what feels most comfortable. Tell the author that you have the digital copy. We’re thrilled you’re readers, and even better, tell us your favorite and why. In most cases (small exceptions at certain bookstores), it’s acceptable and common place to still ask for something signed! I’ve signed scrapbooks that include the cover, or make it simple! Bring a blank notebooks, canvas bag, or picture frame mat and a couple of Sharpie markers. Don’t be afraid to ask for a picture with the author–and try to tag them on social media, too!
Also, more authors are moving to sell digital copies on their sites. I’m in the process of listing my ebooks and have been excited to hear about my author buddies taking similar actions.
Great question, and thanks for asking, Janet.