Four of the signings took place in the typical locations: book stores, the library, an author event. But the other six have been more unusual places. I work at a women's gym, so with the owner's encouragement I held a signing there one Saturday morning. The owner of a skin care spa I visit invited me to sign books all day at their holiday open house. I have a friend who owns a gift shop in an outdoor mall in our town, and she suggested I set up a table outside her store during the annual autumn "Sidewalk Sale".
|Signing books at my gym|
I purchased tables at two different holiday craft fairs and discovered how valuable good table space is as vendors staked their claim as soon as the doors opened for set-up. But I'm learning the routine, and at one fair I received a flier looking for vendors for a local "Psychic Fair".
It was scheduled the weekend before Valentine's Day, and the wheels in my mind started turning. Silver Lake is a ghost story and a love story - people interested in connecting with spirits or looking for a good romance read might be a perfect audience! I purchased a spot at the fair for $40.
A big blizzard resulted in the shutdown of the entire town on the scheduled weekend, so the event was postponed. I was disappointed to miss out on the Valentine's Day angle. Then I found out in March, with less than a week's notice, a new location had been found to accommodate the fair, and it was back on.
I didn't see much advertising for the fair that week, and with the late notice I was worried. But the traffic was great all day! I wasn't sure what to expect at a Psychic Fair, but it was very interesting. There were about 20 psychics participating, and they each had a little table with chairs set up in the middle of the room. Information on each psychic was posted at the entrance, along with a sign-up sheet for a 20 minute slot. Some worked with Tarot Cards or objects, some specialized in spirit communication (proof of afterlife), some helped answer questions about the future or offered spirit guidance. One medium was obviously very popular; her slots were filled up for the whole day very quickly! Each reading was $20 and many people visited several psychics.
The vendors were lined up all around the outside of the readings area, and I was the only one selling books. Other items for sale included jewelry, crystals, handmade soaps and cards, natural products, and food. The 6 hours went by quickly and I did well enough with sales to come out ahead of my $40 investment.
But the best part was an email I received yesterday from someone who purchased my novel. I've pasted it below, and although this reader wasn't a psychic, I hope her prediction comes true!
I met you last week at the psychic fair and purchased your novel. I loved your book and really enjoyed the way you wrote and the story line. I tend to read novels that are best sellers and found your book to be as well written as I have ever read. Based on the fact that this is your first novel, I predict you are going to be a very successful writer."
I'm crossing my fingers, and more importantly, working hard on book #3. And in my spare time (ha, ha), I'll keep trying to come up with new and creative ways to reach readers!