Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Book Signings - the Benefits Beyond Book Sales

by Lynette Eason @LynetteEason

Hi everyone, I wanted to take a moment to introduce a friend of mine to you. I met Wanda at an ACFW conference one year. We shared a table at a book signing at the Mall of America in Minnesota one year. They seated us alphabetically…but that was great. I’d never met Wanda before and we had a good chance to get to know one another a bit. I asked her share a bit with us about her new release. And if you like suspense I know you’re going to LOVE it!

But first, since the subject of book signings has come up, I thought I’d talk a little bit them. Frankly, I have a love/hate relationship with them. LOL. I’ve had quite a few signings and there are things you can do to make them “successful”. Well how do you judge whether or not you have had a successful signing. Guess that depends on your definition of the word success. Let me give you a couple of examples.

Not too long after my second book with Revell released, Don’t Look Back, I was doing a book signing in Spartanburg, SC. Christian Supply is a privately owned store and I have nothing but great things to say about it. Chuck Wallington owns the store and he’s a huge supporter of authors. He willingly opens up the store, spends quite a few dollars marketing and he and his staff just do a great job getting the word out about the event and then hosting the author. All that to say, I had a fabulous signing. People came in—like people I wasn’t related to!—and I signed books for a solid two hours. I don’t know how many I actually sold, but it was a lot! I considered that a successful signing. (Thanks Chuck!)

Then there was the signing that wasn’t at Christian Supply. This store shall remain nameless. Ha. I showed up and they had everything ready. The books were neatly stacked, the poster was on the door and the staff actually knew I was going to be there that day. Everything looked great. I signed maybe three books—and two of them were pity signings for the bookstore staff. Now, in terms of sales, this might look like a really dismal signing. A failure and a waste of time for everyone involved, right? Well, no. Because I spent the time talking to the staff. They were so sweet and so interested in my books and I really got to know a few of them. The store wasn’t terribly busy so I wasn’t taking them away from the customers. When I left the store, I hadn’t signed many books, but I had several new friends and a couple of new fans. I know they’re promoting my books to anyone who walks in and says, “I’m looking for a good suspense story, who should I read?” So while I hadn’t signed many books, I still consider that a successful book signing.

So, what about you? Do you go to book signings? If not, why not? Do you think the ereader explosion has anything to do with the fact that book signings don’t generally see a huge turn out? (Unless you’re Karen Kingsbury or John Grisham, but we won’t go there…) You know what I mean. What are your thoughts about book signings?

And here’s a little more about Wanda—my book signing buddy who made the experience a success—even though I didn’t sell one single solitary book that day.

Wanda Dyson is the author of 7 critically acclaimed suspense novels and coauthored the true story of Tina Zahn (Why I Jumped), featured on Oprah. Readers characterize her books as "riveting" and "packed with twists and turns." Multiple members of law enforcement have praised her work saying that "her knowledge of the treacherous world of bounty hunting pours across every page" and "will not disappoint anyone looking for action, danger, and suspense."

Shepherd's Run
After two masters’ degrees and well on his way to a third, finance expert Steven Shepherd never imagined he’d be chasing down criminals, collaring them, and bringing them to justice. But when his father passes away, leaving him and his siblings the family bounty hunter business, he felt obligated to join the team and make the best of it.  In spite of being a co-owner, he's treated like little more than a glorified errand boy and the lack of respect he feels is starting to rub the wrong way, so when he comes across a young woman he believes is innocent of the charges levied against her, he decides to take matters into his own hands and help her out. But his good intentions backfire when she sets him up and he’s framed for the murder of a police officer.

Andrea Morrow and her mother changed their names and moved hundreds of miles away from each other in hopes of finding safety and putting a violent past behind them. But those hopes are dashed when the past comes calling and Andrea is forced to do whatever she can to protect her mother. And now, she's dragging a nice guy like Steven Shepherd into her nightmare. Can she find the strength to finally move beyond the horror of being a victim or will she have to watch another good man die? 

On the run, Steven and Andrea must rely on each other and the skills of the Prodigal team to find a killer before he finds them. Each new clue points to a terrifying scenario--a crooked cop and a killer bent on revenge working together. Steven finally realizes that the only way out is to embrace a truth he'd been running from--and become the man his father always knew was there. 

Lynette here. So, thanks to a book signing that any normal person would label a dismal failure, I call it a success because I met and got to know Wanda resulting in a new friend who also writes amazing books!

I'd love to know how a book signing has led you to discover a new friend and/or a new favorite author. Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.


Lynette Eason is the award-winning, bestselling author of over thirty books. Lynette writes for Revell and Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line. Her books have finaled or won awards in contests such as The Maggies, Inspirational Readers Choice Award, The Carol, ECPA Book of the Year, The Selah, and others. Her most recent wins are the Carol Award in 2013 and the Inspirational Readers Choice Award in 2014. She began her teaching career in the public school classroom and has since moved to teaching at conferences all over the country. Lynette often speaks at women’s conference and retreats, but finds her first love is teaching writing. In her spare time she can be found hanging out with her family, loving on her nieces and nephews, traveling, and…um…writing. Lynette and her husband Jack live in South Carolina with their two teenagers. Life is never boring, that’s for sure! Lynette can often be found online at @lynetteeason on Twitter, and


  1. Just read back through my blog post. So sorry for all the typos! That will teach me to proof read before hitting send. LOL. Or to make sure I'm awake while I'm writing. Oh well...

  2. I love going to book signings. I usually purchase the books even if I don't line up to get them signed. I enjoy hearing about the author's background and reasons for writing the book and the "discipline" necessary to write professionally