Thursday, September 5, 2019

Why You Should Support Other Author’s Events

by Lynn H. Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

During the first week of each month, my social media feeds are full of book launch news. The latest releases from both long-time favorite and new-to-me authors are available for purchase and the authors are promoting their books with Facebook live parties, Instagram takeovers, blog tours, book signings, giveaways, and more. 

If you’re deeply entrenched in the writing world, you may have started tuning it all out. “Oh great. Another book signing. Yay.” You may shoot a quick message of encouragement and then promptly forget about it. After all, it isn’t your book that’s releasing. And besides, those authors have a whole team of publicity and marketing people helping them. Why do they need your support?

Why indeed.

Let’s get the obvious reasons out of the way first shall we? 

1. Most authors do not have a publicity machine behind them.They are scrambling for every sale and taking all kinds of risks to get their book in front of readers. Even if that author does have the support of a publicity and marketing team, they are still doing hours of promo work and pouring crazy amounts of energy into promoting their book. Please don’t assume that your support isn’t needed and appreciated. 

2. It’s the nice thing to do. This may seem simplistic, but our world is harsh and there’s nothing wrong with choosing to be supportive for no other reason than that it is kind to do so.

3. If you’re already published, you can appreciate—better than anyone else—how much time and energy it has taken to reach this point. 

4. If you’re pursuing publication then the “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” concept is huge here. If you don’t want to be alone at a book signing someday, maybe you should consider attending a few yourself. 

But what if you aren’t feeling particularly altruistic? Or maybe you want to be kind, but you need a few more reasons to explain the importance of a quick trip to the bookstore to your significant other. Are there any other reasons?

Oh, yeah.

5. Digital Events: Facebook Live, Instagram Takeovers, Blog Tours, etc.—Let’s face it. These are usually the easiest. You don’t have to leave home and you can comment, interact, and share the event with your friends, all from your favorite chair while wearing your pajamas. 
  • If you’re already published, there’s a good chance the author will mention you as they’re interacting with their readers. It might look something like this—“Y’all, if you love Southern fiction you should check out my friend Lindsey Brackett’s books. They’re great.” 
  • If you’re pursuing publication,this is a great learning opportunity. Seriously, if you aren’t published (and even if you are) you should be attending all the FB Live events you can. You’ll learn how the author interacts with their readers, what types of giveaways they do, what they talk about, and then you can make notes about what you’ll want to do when it’s your turn.  
6. Live Events: Book Signings, Panel Discussions, Author Events—We’re all busy and it’s harder to be there in person. I get it. But there are some real perks to showing up. 
  • If you’re pursuing publication, book signings are a great way to meet the authors you’re aspiring to emulate. I am so awkward that I get nervous just introducing myself to people, but a few years ago I hopped in my car and drove to a local bookstore for a signing by Lynette Eason. She became my mentor and is now a dear friend. You never know what might happen, but you can be sure you’ll never find out if you don’t show up! 
This is also a great way to learn. Do they have chocolate or cookies or donuts? Do they do a giveaway? Do they give a talk? How did they decorate their table? Don’t just attend the event. Take notes. 
  • If you’re already published, book events are a great way to introduce yourself—and your books—to the manager of the store, and to do so in a way that isn’t super awkward. (Really. I’m the queen of awkward). 
Case in point: I recently attended the book signing of my friend Lindsey Brackett (who really does write amazing Southern fiction and you absolutely should read her books) at a local bookstore, Fiction Addiction. Because I’m a big chicken, I wasn’t even going to speak to the owner of the store, but our own Edie Melson introduced us. 

Ten minutes later (this is NOT hyperbole), I was scheduled to be on a Mystery Author panel that conveniently enough will take place on Saturday, September 7th, just four days after my newest release (One Final Breath). The store owner also gave me some great tips for introducing myself to other bookstore owners around the country and there’s talk of a book signing for a group of local Christian authors next spring. 

Could I have pulled that off on my own? Maybe. (Unlikely). But an interaction that would have felt forced and weird instead took place in a much more organic way and I’m hopeful it is just the first step toward a wonderful relationship.

So, now that I’ve convinced you of how important this is, let’s face a few facts.

Will you be able to participate in every event, show up for every book signing, and comment on every post? No.

Should you feel guilty about it when you can’t? No.

But I hope you’ll consider clicking the "going" button, liking and commenting on posts, and sharing your bookish enthusiasm for another author with your friends and followers.  

And when you can, make the effort to show up in person!
Who knows what will happen?

Grace and peace,

(I really will be on a Mystery Panel at Fiction Addiction in Greenville, SC on Sept. 7that 2PM and would love to see you!) 

Why You Should Support Other Author’s Events - @LynnHBlackburn on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

6 Reasons to Support Your Fellow Authors from @LynnHBlackburn on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Lynn H. Blackburn loves writing suspense because her childhood fantasy was to become a spy—but her grown-up reality is that she's a huge chicken and would have been caught on her first mission. She prefers to live vicariously through her characters and loves putting them into all kinds of terrifying situations—while she's sitting at home safe and sound in her pajamas! 

Her Dive Team Investigations series kicked off in 2018 with Beneath the Surface and In Too Deep (A SIBA Okra pick and Selah Award Finalist). The 3rd book in the series, One Final Breath, releases in September 2019. She is also the author of Hidden Legacyand Covert Justice,which won the 2016 Carol Award for Short Novel and the 2016 Selah Award for Mystery and Suspense. Lynn lives in South Carolina with her true love and their three children. You can follow her real life happily ever after at and on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram.


  1. Amen Ms. Lynn. So important to remember "You get what you give" ma'am. God's blessings.

  2. Yes, yes! Support authors! :-) I enjoy participating in book launches, Facebook parties, in-person author meet and greets, book signings, writing reviews and any other way I can support great authors. I appreciate support, too.