Late last month I had the pleasure of being able to answer questions and talk about my novella, Tales from the Fountain Pen, with a book group on the other side of the country.
It was the first time I’d participated in something like that as an author and I learned quite a bit. Not just about how my novella was received, what characters and events stood out for the members of that book group, and how much they wanted a sequel! But also some basic information on how to go about setting up a successful author Skype-in.
For those of you - authors or book group members - who would like to organize a video conference author meeting here are some points I came up with after my first one.
- Agree to parameters with the group leader or organizer on the format, the time and how long they anticipate you being a part of the meeting.
- Double check your technology! Have a back up option if Skype is not cooperating, such as Google video chat or face-time.
- Offer some questions the moderator can use should there be a lull in the conversation.
- Set a time limit and know the time zone you will be calling into.
- Make sure you won’t be interrupted by pets, family or phones.
- Make sure your video image is well-lit and comes across clearly.
- Be professional and gracious.
Not everyone will gush over your writing, but as hard as it is, don’t take it personal. For the most part though you’ll find book group members love talking to an author. It gives them some insight into the process and story behind the story.
If anyone is part of a book group interested in reading Tales from the Fountain Pen and would like to have me do a virtual author visit, let me know in the comment section and we’ll arrange it.