According to a declaration from The National Women’s Book Association, October is National Reading Group Month. This official website has a list of events and activities that will take place in many U.S. cities, including author readings, lectures and workshops.
We’re going to celebrate here at Author Exposure! Authors have been submitting essays to us about their experiences with book clubs. We have a great line-up of authors for you! Be sure to join us every Tuesday throughout the month of October.
With us today is New York Times Bestselling novelist Joshilyn Jackson. I had the pleasure of meeting her at several recent book events here in Atlanta. She kindly wrote this essay for us about her experiences with a book club from Decatur, GA.
There’s a book club in Decatur that has read all three of my novels; I’ve been there each time. I’ve done several hundred Skype and conference calls, but I have kids. My evenings are mostly about piano lessons and youth group and ballet. I do maybe ten-twelve book club visits a year. This club? If they read it, I will come.
Mostly because I like them. Ten smart, well read, funny women . What’s not to like? But also, these chicks are savvy in the ways of writers. They set out excellent Author Bait.
They meet in a wine bar. That does not hurt, especially if the author in question happens to be Irish. *cough* Also, my husband doesn’t like me to visit clubs in homes unless I know one of the members. He is convinced a clever cannibal will lure me over to his abattoir by pretending to be a book club, and I will never be seen again.
They have never been afraid to ask challenging questions. They don’t insult me, but they talk with me openly about their reactions to the book. (Again, the wine bar meeting place may help with this…) It’s such a treat to be able to talk about the people who live only in my head and on the page with others who really know them. It feels like delicious gossip.
Last but not least, they always have their copies there for me to sign. They like my stuff enough to want to own it and keep it. Some of them have me sign their copies to a friend or relative. That tells me they like my work enough to recommend it to other folks. That’s the nicest thing you can do for an author whose work you enjoy; spread the word.
Next summer, when this group reads Backseat Saints, it’s a safe bet that I’ll be there.
Please visit Joshilyn’s website, http://joshilynjackson.com/, to learn more about her books, appearances, and blog!
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