Invite an Author to Your Book Group

Posted on November 4, 2005

Teresa Mendez of the Christian Science Monitor suggests inviting an author to attend as a why to add some excitement to your book group. In addition to making it more likely that people will read the book Mendez says there is a good chance the author will attend -- especially if you select a local author.

"The misconception about authors is that they're not people like you and me," says Erin Cox, assistant director of publicity at Scribner. "They're just like everyone else and they want their work ... to be loved. A group of people who elected to read your book and invited you - that's a nice invitation to get."

For a certain type of writer, particularly those who write literary fiction - a genre that tends to be more popular with book groups and critics than its sales would suggest - the invite may be especially well received. And many publishing houses consider book clubs an untapped market.

The article discusses a book group in Boston that invited local author Steve Almond to talk about his book called CandyFreak
On a Tuesday toward the end of summer, Heidi Cron and her seven-person club hosted Boston-area author Steve Almond, whose account of the independent candy-manufacturing industry, "Candyfreak,"also chronicles his obsession with the stuff.

"It was easier than I thought," says Ms. Cron. "He happens to be someone who's around my age ... and so it didn't seem so far flung. But I really was surprised by how quickly he responded."

Steve Almond's eager response is not surprising. Mendez points out that Anita Diamant, author of the The Red Tent, became a bestseller with the help of book groups. Diamant said: "When anyone invited me to a book group in my neighborhood, I went."