I participated in my first major literary event over the Labor Day weekend. For me, the event was a mixture of business and fun. The weather in Decatur Georgia was wonderful, almost fall-like, on Saturday morning. The crowd did not disappoint because I did not allow myself to have high hopes. Yes, I wanted to recoup my investment, but the most important thing was making connections at an event that catered to readers. I passed out all of my business cards. Made connections with local book clubs, and many readers promised to email me their thoughts on my novels after they read them.
I learned many valuable lessons. First, my grandiose ideas of quitting my day job… well let’s say I am more realistic now. Secondly, I learned to trust my own instinct. The tent was bare and exhibitors were left to their imagination in creating ways to grab the attention of the attendees so they would want to visit your booth. I figured everyone would have mints, so I went to Your DeKalb Farmer’s Market and purchase fruit. Yes, it was more expensive (not worrying so much because it is a tax write off) but the fruit attracted many people to my booth. Some visitors turned to customers and some stopped for the fresh fruit and conversation. Several attendees, particularly those with children, thanked me for having fruit as opposed to candy.
The most important thing I learned was the importance of being true to your craft. Many people told me my books will only attract African Americans. The festival proved the theory wrong. I sold books to people from different ethnic backgrounds. It is all in the delivery.
While I did not get rich, I was pleased with the end result and looking forward to exhibit again in 2017. Also, I had great help. Thanks Lamar Crowell for taking time out of your day to help this struggling writer.
I will be signing books at Nubian bookstore in Morrow GA September 17, 2016 at 12:00. The address is 1540 Southlake Pkwy, Morrow, GA. The phone number is (678) 422-6120. Please stop by; I would love to chat.
Also, it is important to promote as many writers as you can. September 2016 Literati Spotlight is K. F. Johnson. Check out the page, to see what this author is up to, and if so inclined purchase at least one of her books.