Have Book, Need Readers: Public Speaking Photo and Lessons From The Book Signing

by Tamara Wilhite
(Bedford, TX)

Book signing for

Book signing for "Humanity's Edge"

I've been writing technical articles, science fiction, horror, frugal living tips - all genres except romance and mystery. And for technical writing assignments, my work sold well. Here are the specs, here is the article.


Yet the science fiction and horror sold much more slowly, despite having had two books published. My publicist brought up book signings and helped me schedule a few.

The first several book signings did well as friends and family bought copies. Yet strangers rarely paid interest. My publicist brought up the point that book signings are to sell books, and this is a matter of public presentation. People buy books based on the perception of the author. It was, in essence, a public sale of my books. A few of the lessons we learned were:


  1. Being positive. Remaining upbeat, and projecting an aura of success, helps to actually breed success.

  2. Being available. Allowing people to have access to you can only help your cause. The bigger you get, the less time you have, and the more people will appreciate your generosity.

  3. Being confident. Neediness and desperation are guaranteed ways to scare people away.

  4. Being aware of the mood around you and direct it toward an upbeat presentation. Accentuate the positive. Eliminate the negative. If you don't have anything positive about you, fake it.

  5. Being professional. This is a business. Be businesslike. That means staying on your toes, not relaxing. It means taking this seriously, not thinking it's a game. Speaking to the public is public speaking. The objective is to promote the book and sell a few copies. If you make new friends, that is a plus.

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