Surviving Your First Book Signing As An Introvert

Well, last night was my very first book signing and it was a pleasant success.

On a hot July First Friday in Downtown Augusta, Georgia, there were quite a bit of folks who stopped by to meet the three of us who were signing books at the table outdoors. It was a gorgeous evening and I had a lot of fun.

However, going into this event, I was petrified. Outgoing and gregarious on the surface, I’m actually quite the introvert and uncomfortable when dealing with the public as a whole.

One on one is much easier for me than one on a ton. 

Looking back, the book signing was a breeze. Having two author friends sitting with me helped quite a bit. Also, just the simple fact that the bookstore owner was more than eager to push my book gave me enough confidence to get through the signing.

In the end I was pumped, and today I am ready to do more.

If you are a writer and are a bit scared to do a book signing due to introvert tendencies, let me share a few tips that can help you relax and push through the experience.

  1. Bring a friend. Yes, bring someone to sit with you if you’re going to be doing a solo event. Even if you, like me, are going to be signing with others, bring a friend. Mr. LaVeaux came along and gave me moral support the entire time. It helped just having someone there.
  2. Bring something to drink. I don’t know why, but having a big bottle of water at my side made me relax. That may just be one of my weirdnesses.
  3. Come prepared. Two weeks prior to the event, I made sure that I had on hand plenty of copies of my book, some postcards describing Velvet on the front and author info on the back, a stack of business cards, a big banner to display, and a little plate easel to display the book. Mr. LaVeaux grabbed up twine, scissors and tape so we could hang the banner. Having everything together and ready to go reduced my stress level by half.
  4. Invite all of your friends. Same thing as having someone to sit with you, having friends drop in at the signing will make the event into a party. Several of my friends popped in to say hi and pick up a copy of my book. Talk about fun!
  5. Relax and enjoy the opportunity to shine. This truly is an important thing to do. Get situated and bask in the limelight. If you’re fortunate enough to have a local bookseller host an event for you, make it fabulous by relaxing and enjoying the process. It’s not nearly as scary as it seems once you get going. It’s actually a lot of fun!

Don’t be afraid to get out there and sell your book. Now that I’ve been through this for the first time, I’m ready to go out there again. Next step for this novel? Approaching booksellers in Savannah, Georgia. This is where the story of Velvet is set and I believe the city is a good overall market for the book.

Now, onto the next writing project. Happy writing!

Photos by Mr. LaVeaux

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