Sign here

So – I’ve just had my first book signing. That was quite a posh moment, made me feel like a proper author.

If you weren’t able to make it you can get the book from Waterstones online here

And the Kindle version here.

The signing was at Waterstones in Gloucester, where I live. Waterstones is more or less the only show in town as far as bookshops go in most British towns these days. All the little independent ones have gone the way of the dodo and I would guess that even the mighty Waterstones is feeling the pinch what with the online revolution and the march of downloads.

Who knows, in a few years there may not be any bookshops to do signings in, or any books to sign.

But for now there is a Waterstones on every high street with its tables piled high with best sellers and its Costa coffee franchise. When you walk through the door of one you smell the unmistakable scent of new books.  So I was able to spend a Saturday afternoon sitting behind a small pile of my books with Rebsie from my publisher on hand for moral support.

It’s a curious experience this book signing business. Basically you are sat watching people do their shopping. Though I am of course keen to sell copies of my book I don’t feel it’s right to go up to people who aren’t interested and pester them – I wouldn’t want someone badgering me if I was shopping. So I waited for people to come to me – and thankfully quite a few did.

One or two mistook me for a member of staff and wanted me to tell them where the John Grishams were, but most wanted to talk about Song of the Sea God which was great. You really do need a quick way of describing your work in this situation I’ve found – it’s no use coming over all coy and saying it’s too complex to sum up in a few words – people want to know what it’s about. So I have my elevator pitch ready. I tell them it’s about a man who washes up on a small island off the coast of Britain and tries to convince the local people he is a god.

The people I talked to were very receptive and it was a fun experience – plus I sold a few copies which was great. As well as wanting to know what the book was about they asked a bit about me – where I was from, what I do for a proper job, have I written anything else, and so on. I’m quite chatty, which helps I guess, and I enjoyed the whole thing more than I expected to. With any luck I’ll get to do it again!

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6 thoughts on “Sign here

  1. Oh well done, Chris! That sounds so professional! I’ve never done a book signing as such – done a couple of talks that resulted in me signing books (haha) but that wasn’t the main point. How do you get to arrange things like that? Do you have to ask or do they invite you? If the former, I need to pluck up some courage; if the latter, the same – to get asked :)) So glad you sold some books too! That’s brilliant!

    • Thanks Val – I sorted it out myself. I just pester politely until someone says yes. I have found with big companies you can’t really talk to the company but you can make friends with people who work at a particular branch and get them on your side. They tend to be book lovers and want you to do well. The people I’ve talked to like that have all been generous and friendly.

    • You are a much more professional operator than me Carol! I’m just new at this. I did do postcards with the cover to give out at a reading before the book came out, bookmarks is a good idea – will have to see whether I get offered any more signings first!

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