Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Road Trip!

So I was invited to Wausau, WI to attend the Barnes & Noble Mystery Book Group's discussion of my book, Bingo Barge Murder. Thank you Jessie 1! I was a little bit leery of the 400 mile round trip drive, but in the end I was more than thrilled, and ready to come back again.

Tim, the assistant manager, organized a signing prior to the book group's discussion and Q&A. session. Business was slow, and I hung out and chatted with their ereader specialist until it was time to join the group. There were about 12 members in attendance, and all but one had read the book. There were lots of good questions and it was fun being able to tell the behind the story story of characters, places, and events. It's a shift from doing a reading where most people haven't yet read your book and you're trying to hook them into at least picking your book up and taking a look.

So have any of you attended a book group when the group has done your book? Did you have a good experience? How do you compare readings to strictly signings with no reading to a book group discussion? Do you like one better than the other? Why or why not?


Lois Winston said...

Jessie, just yesterday I spoke to a readers group. The Hungry Readers meet for lunch and book discussion once a month at the Manville Public Library in Manville, NJ. For any of you who have watched the news lately, if Manville sounds familiar, it's one of the NJ towns that was nearly completely under water from Irene and Lee. The library was spared, though, and about 2 dozen lovely ladies showed up to listen to me speak about my writing and my books for an hour.

There were also about half a dozen guests in attendance and after hearing all the wonderful things the other ladies said about ASSAULT WITH A DEADLY GLUE GUN, they each bought books.

I've found that most of the time people are more interested in having me talk, whether they've read the book or not, rather than do a reading. I think I've only been asked to do a reading once in the nearly 6 years since my first book came out.

Beth Groundwater said...

I love doing book club visits, especially in-person, because they usually have food and wine (at least the ones I visit do!). I switch from doing signings the first 2-3 months after a book is out to doing book club visits later, after folks have had a chance to read the book. I provide book club discussion questions for each of my books on my website and bring the questions with me. Often, though, the members are more interested in what it's like to be an author and ask a lot of questions about that instead. I visit about 8 book clubs a year and would love to do more. I've done speakerphone visits to long-distance book clubs and would love to Skype with some, too!

Shannon said...

I've done a couple of book clubs and both times it was a blast. Because my book deals with controversial matters and historic and religious stuff, they asked lots of interesting questions that led to lively discussions. And as Beth said, the refreshments are a nice bonus.

Robin Allen said...

I'll be doing my first book group visit next year. Sounds like it should be fun.

Kathleen Ernst said...

Jessie, I was fortunate to visit this same group. I do like meeting with book groups, because it is fun to actually get to talk about the content and answer questions. I often do library programs where some have read the book, but some haven't, which calls for walking a delicate line.