One of the perks of being an author is having book signings. And most of the time we have our book signings at bookstores. But what if you’re a niche author, and your book just doesn’t appeal to a mainstream bookstore?
Let's say, for example, you’ve written a book about accounting, and you’d prefer having book signings at venues for accountants. Where would you find these venues? A good place to start would be to look for professional associations for accountants. Find out if there is a chapter in your area, and start going to their meetings. Professional associations typically have regional conferences, conventions or trade shows. If the cost isn’t too prohibitive, you may want to consider renting a booth and having a book signing at these events.
Many authors are also speakers. In fact, their books help give them the credibility to become speakers, and speaking is one of the best ways to promote any book. If you were to develop a speaking program based on your book, you could speak at meetings or other events for accountants. You could collect a handsome speaking fee, ($1000 to $5000 speaking fees are not uncommon in the business), and you could also have your book available as a back of room item and have a book signing after the meeting is over. Or you could develop seminars or workshops for accountants based on your book, and offer to sign copies for your participants.
Perhaps you would like to become a speaker or workshop leader, but you don’t know how. Or maybe you find the very thought of public speaking absolutely petrifying. Try Toastmasters. There are dozens of Toastmasters clubs out there. Their dues are low, and they can teach you everything you ever wanted to know about public speaking. If you already have speaking experience, the National Speakers Association is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, and the local chapter has an excellent candidate program where you can learn more about the speaking business.
And finally, are you willing to travel? The more you are willing to travel, the more opportunities you will have for book signings at non-bookstore venues. There are plenty of opportunities out there. All you have to do is be a little creative.