For the last two Thursdays, we talked about targeting your audience when you are out on a book tour. Today, we discuss Doing the Extras.
Offer to speak whenever you can. Dale Furutani, best-selling author of Kill the Shotgun, has said that things go better when he's had a chance to talk to the audience. I think most authors find this to be true. Readers are more likely to buy your book if they feel like they know you.
For the actual signing, consider taking some bookmarks with you to slip into the books you sign -- maybe ones that promote your next book due out. April Kihlstrom has said that she takes "copies of tip sheets for new authors (for the invariable would-be writer who would otherwise monopolize my time indefinitely)." And, no, she's not copping an attitude -- she's trying to make sure everyone who wants to talk to her gets her attention in the most efficient way possible. She also likes to take pins with her bookcover to give to store clerks to wear.
Remember to sign stock before you leave the store (check with the CRC first). Autographed books sell better and remain on the shelves longer than unsigned copies.
Follow up with a thank you note to the bookstore. Think of it as establishing a long-term relationship. You want to be invited back book after book.
And last of all, smile, be patient, be gracious. Be thankful you have fans who want to buy your book -- whether that's a hundred fans waiting in line or two.
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