Saturday, 21 January 2017

Giving Author Talks 2: More tips

St Albans Lit Fest 2016
In the last blog, we looked at the mechanics of presenting a good talk. Now lets finesse this a little further. Here are my 'must-do' tips as the event approaches.


1. Make sure you have liaised with the event organiser. I usually email a week before to check they have got the stuff I need sorted. I then email/call 2 days before to say how much I am looking forward to meeting them and doing the event. I tell them when I will be arriving, and check parking arrangements.

2. On the day, arrive in plenty of time. Do not assume the organisers will have people to unload/help you set up. Be as independent as you can. Smile and thank a lot.

3. A few essentials: Wet wipes/hand sanitizer (stuff gets dusty; you will be signing books later). Water. Float for books. Notebook for sales/useful contacts. Two signing pens that work. Business cards.

4. Make sure you thank the organiser, his/her helpers, and the audience for turning up. I usually do this straight after I've been introduced, in case I forget.

5. When giving your talk, SIGNPOST clearly. 'Now let's move on to the second part: how I write the actual books.' 'Finally, let's look at some of my research tools.'

6. NEVER go over time. It's discourteous.

7. Send the organisers a little handwritten note a couple of days after the event thanking them for hosting you and saying how much you are looking forward to doing another event in the future.

I hope these two blogs have helped. I gather from the comments that many people have found the tips useful. I have sat through some pretty dreadful talks, given by top authors, and have learned shedloads. The main thing is: enjoy yourself! Your audience are there for you. They want to find out about you and your books. And on your success, other writers may be invited!http://carolhedges.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/giving-author-talks-top-tips.html

7 comments:

  1. All really useful stuff - common sense when you think about it, but checklists like this make sure nothing is forgotten,

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  2. The picture is perfect. 'Donate here'

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  3. I don't know why, but this morning I feel fired with enthusiasm. I have read both these posts and decided on two things: first, I must revitalise my blog - think of a "handle" perhaps - and second, approach a couple of LitFests, something I've ignored over the past few years. Thanks, Carol - you've inspired me.

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  4. I'm hoping to do some speaking soon. I've been teaching for 5 years so hopefully that'll be helpful too. But this post gives some good pointers!

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  5. Great advice as always, Carol. Hope that one day I shall be needing it.

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  6. Wonderful! The last time you did something like this I saved all the tips. It really helped me make a checklist for my own talk!

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