By Leslie Lindsay
The best part of writing a book…is planning a launch party. (Do you have that Folger’s coffee commercial jingle running through your head? No? Well, try reading that first statement again). Seriously. I am so ready to celebrate! After nearly 4+ years of writing a book about an obscure and very “gray” motor-neurological speech disorder (childhood apraxia of speech), I am about ready to spontaneously combust into tiny pieces of matter. Oh wait—uh, that would be the confetti floating around the party venue with a pop of a cork and not me. I have other books to write, after all. It would be no good if I combusted. Hummm….
So, I digress. A book launch is a fun, happy, celebratory time in which one who has written gets to show-off what she has been doing for the last 4+ years she has been holed away eating carbs and downing her misery in turtle mochas at Caribou. It’s a time to share the accomplishment and promote the new book…’cause if people don’t know about it, they ain’t gonna buy it. And if they don’t buy it, well then they aren’t able to understand and help their kiddos with CAS. So, that’s the purpose.
Who to invite? Everyone you know! Your friends, neighbors, co-workers, folks intersted in reading the book, your parents, your parent’s friends, your extended family, experts, media (yep–it’s news, alright), a local bookstore, your favorite librarians, your children’s teachers, your extended facebook friends, your book group, your writer’s group, your fave peeps at the coffee shop who served you all of those carbs, your aerobics intructor, your yoga guru, your massage therapist (because of those sore shoulders you developed hunkered over your laptop), your chiropractor, your internist…because they are the folks who really “saw” you through this process.
Where to host? Someplace local. Not your house. Big, neutral, nice. Not too nice. Free or cheap is the ticket. A community center with a party room, a clubhouse in your neighborhood, a country club (if you’re lucky), your library (if they let you), a hotel conference room, a school (again, if they let you), a park if the weather is generally predictable, or a restaurant with a private room.
What to do: Celebrate! Maybe the author should say a few words, you can show a video montage of you slaving away at your laptop (well, that is if you want to bore your guests out of their gourd), have some food–a little something to snack on; doesn’t have to be a meal. And sign your book! Give ’em away at a discounted rate if you can.
Follow-up with thank-you cards. They did a lot to help promote you as a writer.