I was asked to do a blog on how to get into bookstores. The process is easy, but it can take time. Basically all you have to do is ask. If you’re lucky enough to have a local bookstore, go in or email and ask if they take consignment books. I’ve found they usually take a smaller percentage than the box stores. And most want to promote local talent.
If you want to get into someplace like Chapters/Indigo it can be done. I’ve done it and several of my friends have as well. The first step is to go in or phone and ask if they take consignments. Not all do. They’ll provide a contact name for the person who handles your genre. It’s usually a different person for adult and children’s books. The ones I’ve contacted so far have provided an email for me to make a formal request. One asked me to drop off a copy so he could review it first. Be warned — they take 45% commission.
Currently, my books are in two locations. One is a local coffee shop. The owners are big on promoting local talent and always have someone’s art work/photography up on the walls for sale. They’ve also made arrangements with the writing organization I belong to, The Writers’ Community of York Region (WCYR) to have our published authors sell their books. The commission fee is waaaaaay lower than Chapters. A small bookstore about an hour east of me also has my books, but unfortunately she’s closing in March. Too many small businesses of all types are closing their doors these days.
Don’t forget about craft fairs and farmers’ markets. The cost of a booth can be as low as $25. Higher end fairs or conferences can run over $100, but if you have a friend who’s also an author, you can usually split a table.
As the saying goes, think outside the box. Do you write children’s books? Check with a local store that sells children’s clothing or toys. They might be willing to sell your books. Do you write about horses? How about the local equestrian store? If you live in a small community with only a few stores, one of them might be more than happy to promote the local author.
Check everywhere you think is a fit for your book. After all, asking is free.
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Well, it’s official. I confirmed my first book signing. On June 13 I’ll be live and in person at Chapters Newmarket, 17440 Yonge Street at 11 am. Hopefully I’ll be able to get a few more locations later in the year. Oh, and I might even have a new book available for launch in June.
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This morning I finally finished the first draft of my 3rd in the Detective Hodgins Victorian Mystery series. Haven’t come up with a title yet, but that will come in time. I doubt it will be ready for my next event, which is the end of April, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed. I need to let this one rest a few weeks while I edit my new novel, Generation Witch: Rebirth. As the title suggests, this is not a Victorian mystery. 🙂
I’m in the process of arranging a book signing at my local Chapters and I’d really like this ready to launch by then. The date isn’t set yet, but I should have enough time to have it ready and printed.
Well, the final spoken word open mic for 2017 at Covernotes Tea and Coffee is over. We had a great selection of readers and a full coffee shop of listeners. The genres covered to were; children’s fiction, general fiction, mystery, and sci-fi/fantasy.
We’re taking a break in December, but the Writers’ Community of York Region (WCYR) will be holding a pot luck in Dec and we’ll have an open mic there. We’ll pick up the monthly coffee-shop readings again in January. We’ll be announcing the dates and time with a special announcement some time in December. Meanwhile, here’s a slideshow of what you missed if you weren’t with us. In no particular order, I present: Erika Willaert, Susan Charney, Sheila Horne, Dianne Gemmell, Rob Rinne, MJ Moores, Paul Teledi, and me (Nanci Pattenden).
I spent a good chunk of the day Friday in lovely Fergus, Ontario with my friend MJ and her son Jaden. Lingered in the library, which is gorgeous, for a few hours. Originally built in the very early 1800s, it’s been expanded, but it’s something else.
We grabbed lunch, then went to Roxanne’s Reflections, where we left our books on consignment.
Then we had a quick look at the river before heading home. All in all, a nice day out, despite the chill in the air.
Next week is the annual Christmas Dinner for some current and ex-Toronto Hydro Workers. Got my invitation the other day. I wasn’t going to go this year as I have a meeting that night, but I don’t need to go. I’d rather meet up with friends of old. Looking forward to it.
This past weekend was a huge mystery/crime/thriller conference – Bouchercon. It was my first time attending. I met up with some writers I already knew, met several people I only knew by name online.
The panels were made up fabulous authors from all around the world, including two of my favs, Maureen Jennings and Kathy Reichs.
I came away with new acquaintances, new books, and a list of at least two and a half dozen new author’s names whose books I want to check out. Oh, and I rejoined Crime Writers of Canada after a year away.