Tag Archives: author signing

Come see us at Black Ice Comics! – Author Meet & Greet

Good news!

Isaac and I are going to be at Black Ice Comics with our books in Houghton, Michigan this Friday from 5:30 pm to 7:30 PM! 😀

If you’re near the Houghton/Hancock area of the Upper Peninsula, come check us out! There will be snacks, and we’ll have our books available for purchase and signing!

Author Meet & Greet at Black Ice Comics

We hope to see you there! 😀

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Thoughts on Publishing – Hastings Book Signing – Magic’s Stealing

Author Book Signing - Stephanie Flint

Me at the table I shared with Christine Gilbert.

About a week ago, I took part in a multi-author book signing at the Hastings in Warrensburg, Missouri. It was an after-event for the Writers of Warrensburg’s first writing conference, in which we had around thirty writers (from beginning to published) attended panels led by published authors. The panels covered everything from characters to marketing, and we enjoyed the scenic Cena’s Nook (a local bed & breakfast). Had a great time and learned some interesting tidbits (I was hidden most of the event, since Isaac and I were organizing the critique group’s entries), and chatted with several local authors (a few we had met before at a local conventions while wandering the vendor halls).

After the writer’s conference, several of the authors who had published books went to Hastings for the signing. The event ran from 4-6 pm, and the Hastings staff set up several tables for us (two authors per table). Most of us had already brought a copy of our books into the store for them prior to the event, that way they could get the information into the system and make it easier for them to print barcode stickers on the actual day.

Author Book Signing - Writers of Warrensburg

Everyone getting setup for the multi-author signing.

For my half of the table, I included two business cards (shaped like playing cards–one had Magic’s Stealing info and the other had general publishing contact info). I had a bowl with cover-color-themed candy (the bowl is the same as the one on the cover), a newsletter signup sheet with QR code (no one signed up, though), a printed mount of the book cover, and a stand with the book (I used one of those receipt-spindle things with a plastic tip that I found at Office Depot when the local store had a closing sale). Behind the scenes, I brought a couple signing pens, regular pens, and a sticky notepad (in case I needed anyone to spell their name). I had extra books on hand, ready to have Hastings put a price sticker on if needed.

Author Book Signing - Stephanie FlintI went to the conference and signing in my pseudo-steampunk outfit (what I wore for my author photo), and brought Dragon (the stuffed dragon on my shoulder) along for the ride. (As a side note, Dragon sold me a book. It was at the end of the signing, and I had run out to the car to grab a couple things before I could pack up (I had carpooled with another author on my way to the signing, so we could get there early). On my way in, a Hastings customer asked what the dragon was for. I mentioned I was dressed up since I was selling my book at the signing that day. He asked about what I wrote, and I showed him the book (I was holding a proof copy of Magic’s Stealing at the time). He seemed interested and asked about having a copy, so I told him I could get him an actual copy inside. Signed him a book (with a tiny doodle of Dragon), and  I hope he enjoys it. 🙂

Yay for conversation starters!

Hastings Sign for Writers of Warrensburg Book Signing - Picture provided by Jason Meuschke

Hastings Sign for the Writers of Warrensburg Book Signing – Picture provided by Jason Meuschke

Overall, I sold six books. Three to people I knew, one to someone I met that day at the conference, and two to Hastings customers who happened to stop by that day. It was a lot of fun, and I’m hoping to do another signing once I have the next book available.

I hope you enjoyed this post. 🙂

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Thoughts on Publishing – Results of My First Book Signing

Yesterday I had my first book signing! It was held from 4-6 pm at Reader’s World in Sedalia, Missouri. I sold five books–four to people I knew from my workplace, and one to a person I didn’t know but who showed interest in my signing table (thank you, everyone!).

Today I’m going over my process of setting up and holding the book signing, in case it helps any of you who are considering doing a book signing in the future. 🙂

First, of course, I talked to the bookstore. In this case, I went in with a copy of Magic’s Stealing a couple months ago to see if they might be interested in carrying the book. They took four copies on consignment (they don’t pay me until they sell the book, we have an agreed upon royalty, and I’ll pick up any unsold copies at a later date).

I signed those copies (a simple signature, not personalized) and left them with the store. One of those copies sold to my husband’s uncle, who lives in the area (thank you, too!) and knew I’d left copies there.

Then, a couple weeks ago, I arranged a signing with the manager.

I tried sending an email at first, but when I didn’t hear back from them, I was worried that maybe my email hadn’t gone through (since I’m still new to that particular email service and that does happen). Turns out the manager was out of town, but I was able to call once she came back in, and we got everything scheduled–they were really friendly and easy to work with.

I asked if there was anything they wanted me to bring in, to which the manager suggested a flyer for their door and any promo materials I wanted to leave on the table. I was still waiting for my promo cards to come in, so I created a set of small “mini” flyers which contained a picture of the book on the front, with info about the signing (date, time, location), as well as the book’s blurb on the back. I also created a larger flyer that I hoped might catch the attention of store-goers.

It took a couple tries to get the flyer to look right (the printer needed to be set at “matte” photo paper before it would print reasonably high quality on regular print paper– and even then I switched to a “parchment” paper to get the best results. I also printed about 40 of the mini fliers (four per page, duplex setting for the front-back parts) to use as walk-by ads and reminders for my book.

Readers World - Magic's Stealing Book Signing Flyer

On the bright side, I did receive the metallic print mount for Magic’s Stealing in time to drop that off with the fliers, so after work the next day, I dropped off my various pieces.

Upon verifying that the flier would work, I printed two more copies and, at the end of the day Monday, posted one to each of the employee bulletin boards where I work. I didn’t mention anything directly to my coworkers, but they did see the fliers and started asking me about it after lunch… which was really cool. The next day, during morning announcements, one of them mentioned the fliers, so I was able to announce the date and time of the signing (yay!). I’d been wondering if I should ask about announcing it, but they did that for me. 😀

Anyway, I got the promo cards in the mail shortly after, so I dropped off a set at the bookstore. They had set up a small table with the mounted picture, the fliers, and the remaining three books. Plus, they had the flier on the door. I asked if I could drop off the promo cards/bookmarks, which they said was fine. I set them up on the table, then headed out.


The day before the signing, Isaac and I went to Walmarts and picked up supplies for the signing (other than books, I counted and found I had nineteen books (I first thought I only had seventeen) still in stock with me, so I hoped I wouldn’t need more than that). I wanted to have a few extra pens on hand (ballpoint pens keep disappearing around here–I’m not sure where), plus a pen that was a little more nice looking and wouldn’t leave a heavy indention in the paper or smear. I also found a couple “precise” Pilot pens that looked like the ones I had borrowed previously from the bookstore manager to sign their in-store copies.

In addition to the pens, I picked up a set of sticky-notes. I’d seen them mentioned before on the web, and I’d seen them in use at Conquest when I was standing in line for Brandon Sanderson’s book signing, and the sticky notes seemed like a really good idea. The concept is that, when personalizing a signing, you ask people to write the name they want the book dedicated to on the sticky note so that you make sure to spell it correctly. Not only does this avoid spelling mistakes, it’s helpful if you have a hard time hearing them (and it also avoids the inevitable embarrassment of not remembering their name if you know them but you’re terrible with names. Seriously… I spent the last week at work trying to match faces and names in my head).

The final thing Isaac and I picked up was candy to offer people walking by the table. We spent some time looking for pieces that would represent the book. We ultimately chose Hershey kisses (for the papery ribbons coming out of the wrapper, and for the colors. The chocolate truffle ones for their dark pink and brown swirls, and the special dark ones for their purple wrappers). We also picked up a bag of Andes mints (for their green wrappers).Magic's Stealing Book Signing - Candy Bowl

As a note here, only a couple people actually took a piece of candy, so I guess we’ll have plenty left over for the next signing. But several people showed excitement about the candy matching the book cover. (Even the pink and brown actually matched a shade). We served it in the same bowl that’s used as the scrying bowl on the cover. 🙂

Finally, the day arrived for the book signing! I decided what to wear (business casual), and then did some last minute research on book signings to see if there was anything I was missing. First off… the email newsletter signup sheet! I put something together quickly in Excel, because I do plan to do an email newsletter, but no one actually signed up to be included. I still plan on bringing it to future signings, though.

Excel - Newsletter Signup Sheet

I also found an article mentioning the idea of having a guest book of sorts for the people who came to the signing to sign their name. I loved the idea, so I picked out a small journal that I was fairly certain could lay flat before the signing officially started, made a quick purchase, and added that to my table. I arrived about 30-45 minutes early, so I could help set up. I checked to make sure the bookstore was okay with having the candy there (they were). Then Isaac took a setup picture.

Afterward, we waited for people to show up. The very first person was one of my coworkers, as were the next couple of people. During the signing, we had one person we didn’t know show interest, to which I asked if they liked fantasy. She said yes, but she mentioned she didn’t typically buy paperbacks (instead preferring the Nook). We did give her a promo card, and Isaac said we could sign that for her, if she wanted (I was having a bit of trouble hearing her– something I hadn’t considered before that might be a problem for me. While I hear fine in most situations, if people are whispering due to being in a bookstore or library, etc, then I sometimes have a bit of trouble understanding them). After a moment, she decided to go ahead and pick up a book. I used the sticky note system so I could make sure I spelled her name right, and yay! Another book sold to a potential reader. 😀

A couple other people showed interest, and we gave them the cards, but that was about it. Overall, we sold five books during the two hours, mostly during the first hour. There were always about 2-3 groups of people in the store at a given time, with the exception of the last half hour, when the store quieted down. I would have liked to have had more people stop by, but there were two factors that might have been at play here.Magic's Stealing - Book Signing - Reader's World Sedalia

First, in regards to work, one of my co-workers mentioned that they had let a lot of people in my department go home early, which means that the event’s timing wouldn’t have been quite as convenient as it would have been if work let out at normal time (we’re in the season where jobs come in at varied intervals). Second, one of the employees at the bookstore said that one of the schools had cancelled school that day due to a stomach virus going around, and that parents might not have been taking their kids out as much as usual.

Still, I count the signing as a success, and I’m hoping to do more of these in the future. Is there still to learn? Plenty, especially as Isaac and I try to figure out how to bring more people into the events of the target audiences.

I hope you enjoyed this post. Have you attended any book signings, and if so, was there anything you found that they did that was particularly helpful or neat?


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