Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I HEART Libraries!

I’ve been fortunate to spend extended periods of warm(er) winter weather along the beautiful Gulf Coast of Alabama for the past two years as what some might call a snowbirder. So, when the time comes to promote my new releases, I can’t really call upon “my community” for a press release or “my friends” to promote my books in the local bookstores. But, some time last year, I read a blip on one of the many loops (I cannot remember which one) from a writer/librarian who suggested we “donate” a copy of our books to the local library and ask them to catalog it, which ensures that it goes into a large library database.

And with that, I traipsed down to the local library in Gulf Shores, Alabama, donated a copy of my book and asked them to catalog it. I asked if they offered anything like a book signing, and I was fortunate enough to arrive at the correct library, because the warm staff there accepted my books gladly, cataloged them, and scheduled me for their book discussion club February 6th at 6:30 pm and a book signing to follow. Another local library down the road has failed to respond to my queries, so I know how lucky I am. In fact, I’m so fortunate, that the book club coordinator ordered copies of my first two releases for their book club! 

With that success in mind, I trotted up the road to another library in the town of Foley, Alabama, and popped in for a visit with the library director who was extremely enthusiastic about setting up a book “talk” and signing. In fact, having joined the local Gulf Coast chapter of Romance Writers of America, I actually invited several other local authors to join me, and we’re going to have a four-author event there on February 11th at 6 pm.

Moral of the story: Use your libraries for promotion. Even if the one closest to you feels they’re too busy to accommodate you, the next one up the road might be pleased to provide a venue for your sales. And be sure and donate a book to them while you’re at it. It seems only fair! :-)

Bess McBride, www.bessmcbride.com


Mary Ricksen said...

What a great idea Bess!

Isabel Roman said...

As a librarian, I highly recommend this! Unfortunately we can't buy all the great romance books out there, but if a donated author is popular, especially if they're local or come to give a talk, we're more likely to buy all their releases.