Book events cover a multitude of different forms: signings, readings and workshops are some of the face-to-face, real life occasions for authors to meet their readers. However, there are increasingly opportunities for writers to meet their public online, and on Sunday, 12 March, Val Poore was in the hot seat answering questions all afternoon and evening in a special Spotlight Q&A session on the Facebook group, We Love Memoirs. The banner below is the type of header used for the Facebook page and all other promotional advertising. This was the one used when Val was talking about Watery Ways the first time she did a Spotlight Sunday*
Here's what Val says about this kind of event:
"It was actually inspiring and tiring in equal measure. Because this particular group has a membership of approaching 4000, all sorts of people from all over the world come and ask questions in a steady stream throughout the day. The one thing they all have in common is that they enjoy reading (and in some cases, writing) memoirs. Many of those who asked questions are readers of my own memoirs, so as I wasn't always aware they'd read them, it was lovely to hear their comments and questions about my books and my life. There was interest too in my Sunpenny published memoir, Watery Ways, this being the first of my books about my watery world.
By the end of the evening, I'd probably answered around 150 questions. There were nearly 400 comments in total, but of course around half of those were my responses and included the photo quiz questions I put up myself. To keep things lively, I'd prepared a folder of pictures of the places, people and pets in my life which I could use to illustrate my answers, and also have 'where is this?' mini competitions. It was great fun, immensely heartwarming and a marvellous way to become a known figure in my market.
I have to thank the wonderful, main moderator of the group, Julie Haigh, who is tireless in her work for We Love Memoirs and is an amazing organiser. Without her, none of it would have been possible.
The immediate spin off benefit was a sharp spike in my Kindle sales of the day, so it has an instant and positive impact on widening the readership. Obviously, this isn't a massive increase, but it all helps to spread the word and is a great incentive to participate in this kind of online promtional activity! But best of all, it's a way to connect with other readers and writers, so I often follow other authors' SS days too."
For those interested in Val's memoir, Watery Ways, here is the link
And for anyone interested in joining We Love Memoirs, here is a link to their page on Facebook
*Photo banner courtesy of We Love Memoirs Facebook group, used by members to post on Twitter, Facebook and all other online media.