Pre-signing, enjoying a can of Whoopass Energy Drink, because that's how I roll.

This ain’t no “build it and they will come” scenario, folks. Books signings are a hard sell, even for the traditionally published writer. Book sales are a hard sell, and, at a signing, you’re asking people to come buy your books at a specific time, in return for your smiling face and John Hancock. Your mama thinks those are special, but to most people, they aren’t much of an enticement. If you’re indie, you’ll have to work hard and smart if you want a dynamite book signing, but you can achieve fantastic results if you include these factors for success in your planning:

1. Location, location, location

Don’t go holding some random event in an area where you have no following or name recognition. Who the heck is going to come check out the Secret History of Middle American Basket Weavers unless they already know the book, and, even better, you? The only answer: no one. You won’t even get a polite drop-by from the janitor unless you went to high school with him. Why? Because people are afraid that even talking to you will result in them having to buy shit they don’t want. Right? That’s why you scurry past the vendor-person when you see them, too. You know you do. So pick a location where people know of you or your book. Where you can draw a crowd of people that came specifically to see you and buy what you are selling. Otherwise, you’re going to sit by yourself for two hours playing tiddlywinks and pretending you aren’t devastated.

To read the rest of “Indie Author Book Signing Success” on SkipJack Publishing’s Indie Publishing Blog, Click Here. Then come back and see me 🙂


Published by Pamela

edit biographydelete Biography Pamela writes overly long e-mails and the What Doesn't Kill You romantic mysteries from deep in the heart of Nowheresville, TX and way up in the frozen north of Snowheresville, WY. Pamela is passionate about hiking with her hunky husband and pack of rescue dogs (and an occasional goat and donkey), riding her gigantic horses, experimenting with her Keurig, and traveling in the Bookmobile.

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  1. Truth be known, I actually did quite well with the Secret History of Middle American Basket Weavers; but it might have been the free booze, food, shot glasses, and 2 for 1 promotion that got it moving.

    I might have also implied in the invites it was really a soft porn tome w/ plenty of pictures; but of course that only attracted my friends and they are all about ‘free’ so the booze was gone before the books. And of course, that caused a problem because not only were they drunk, but then became angry when the alcohol ran out and there might have been a scuffle or two with the police showing up…but it did make the papers and they say bad publicity is better than no publicity at all, right?

    Of course, now I can never come back to the store so I’m out at the park with the ‘unemployed’ men who seem to be milling about. Did you know you need a permit if you try to ‘sell’ anything at the park? Yes, the police were back and they knew me quite well by then, so I’m listing my books in Craigslist trying to raise enough money for my bail.

    Yes, selling books can be hard…….

  2. Thanks for the advice, Pamela. I hope the book signings in the future go well for you and that you can keep on selling tons of books. Keep on doing all the great things that you’ve been doing.


  3. I read this full article and it’s super smart and helpful. And then I read the comments above and died laughing at Bill Dorman’s comment. 🙂

    So happy for you and all your hard work! You rock!

    1. I like learning new stuff too 🙂

      And I’ll have more chances to learn: 3 more book signings scheduled. I figure I can do 1 a month, and that’s all the emotional energy I have!

  4. Being a self-publishing independent writer is one of the hardest ways to make an easy living… I would suggest it only for really passionate people, my girlfriend has given it a try but she broke…

    1. Yeah, if you are in it to get rich, try something else. If you think it’s easy, try something else. Totally agree. And, I am glad I am doing it. I wouldn’t make any more money through traditional publishing, even if I invested the time to find an agent/publisher, unless I was one of the very, very ,very few and the odds against that are remarkably high.

  5. Really looking forward to the signing at the Dirt Road Divas Tomorrow. The stars are aligned, a host of great friends are committed, the place is awesome. Its going to be great.
    It is so much fun to watch people (and you) at a signing, for those attending know you personally, even though you have told them through a 100 different mediums that your books are out and available for sale all over the place, until they actually see them, in print, touch them, scan through them, I am not sure they ever really grasp that it is real.

    For those of you that are indie writers that read this comment, the message is, YOU MAY THINK, you have reached out to your audience, but I PROMISE YOU, most of them have not HEARD you. Keep trying.

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