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Dear Texas Blog

 

The Future of Book Festivals is Here

 

For over the past six months B Alan Bourgeois have been developing a program that gives more energy and exposure for book festivals and the authors that participate at these events.  There are three key issues for the authors and readers who attend these book festivals as well as for the book festival organizers:

 

1.    discovery of new authors

2.    being over whelmed by the numbers

3.    value to authors attending the event

 

Readers attend the event to discover new authors, but become overwhelmed with the number of authors that are present and in many cases, they forget which ones they talked to.  In many cases, they buy one or two books with the desire to remember the name of the other books they are interested in for future purchase, but have forgotten what the book was, or who the author was.

 

An Author attends the book festival to find new readers and to hopefully sell as many books as possible.  They do their best to obtain information (email addresses usually) about a reader in the hopes of following up with them down the road and get them to buy their book.  Many times, the reader ignores these emails and no sales are created.

 

Thus, you end up with Readers who do enjoy attending the event, but become over whelmed with all the authors present.  The author doesn’t sell as many books as they want or need to, in order to cover the expense of the event.  That now brings us to the third issue, Book Festivals can be pricy.

 

To help offset the cost of the book festival fees, it is critical that an author believes that they have not only sold enough books, or that they WILL sell more books from the event down the road.  But if a reader is overwhelmed by the event and forgets which authors they had checked out in order to purchase their books, then there are no future sales.

 

With Book Festival Network, you are creating an opportunity for Authors to continue to get more exposure after the event not only with the readers who attended, but with others that could not attend, or didn’t know about the event.

 

Accomplishing the additional exposure is done through a three-step process:

1.    Creating web pages for the book festival that includes information about the event, authors participating, etc.

2.    NetCasting the event live as it happens and interview each author giving them a chance to ‘sell’ their books in a short two-minute segment. Then editing the NetCast so that each author has a video of their pitch on their web page after the event is completed.

3.    Creating interactive reasons for the readers that attended the event and others who learn of the event afterwards to view the authors pages, and give them a reason to purchase the book(s).

 

This three-step process creates a winning opportunity for everyone involved.  Authors are given the potential to have sales after the event, the Book Festival gets additional exposure and creates additional value to the book festival, plus increasing the opportunities for the Readers to re-discover the authors that attended the event, which can lead to more purchases.

 

Finally, additional advertising exposure for sponsors of the event, can help offset the additional cost related to the Book Festival Network expenses.  This additional exposure can then increase the value of the book festival greatly, thus giving the festival organizers more opportunities and funds to continue to create great events.

 

At Texas Authors: Meet an Expert on SELF-e Submissions

  

B. Alan Bourgeois’ Texas Authors organization comprises more than 1,000 titles and is based in Austin

  

By Porter Anderson / @Porter_Anderson

 

 

‘We’re Eager To Get Everybody We Can’ Into SELF-e

 

“We have a little over 1,000 titles” in the Austin-based Texas Authors writer-services group, says its founding director B. Alan Bourgeois.

 

 “A lot of our authors are just like me — we have full-time jobs — and so part of what we actually do is a lot of the marketing for those writers, about a third of that work.”

 

And in an innovative approach, Bourgeois has been making submissions of the ebooks of Texas Authors members to SELF-e for them: it’s one of the most recently added services he offers to his membership of around 200 writers.

 

Bourgeois says that he and some of his colleagues were at the American Library Association’s Midwinter conference in Boston and learned about SELF-e there.

 

But when he let the membership in Texas know about SELF-e, “We were running into some fear issues,” he says, on the part of some of his writer-members.

 

Despite the very quick (as in minutes) process of submitting ebooks to SELF-e’s library-system discovery platform, “we had some older members,” Bourgeois says, “who didn’t want to learn” the procedure.

 

If anything, Bourgeois says, the busy lives that so many authors are leading means that “I have a lot of work to do to get the authors to look at the marketing value of this program.”

 

Bourgeois familiarized himself with SELF-e by submitting his own ebooks first. “And then I reached out to the group.”

 

Many of the Texas Authors membership, he says, had tried without much success to work with local libraries. “It can be like pulling teeth to get busy librarians’ attention,” he says. “And I get that they’re inundated by authors.”

 

This is why, he says, the arrival of SELF-e is such a boon.

 

“This is a perfect channel for us to work with, to get the books into the system. We’re saying to our membership, ‘We can help guide you this way.'”

 

And in the process, he says, working to get the membership’s work into SELF-e begins to create more of the relationship with libraries that writer-members have needed. “It’s hard for the big libraries to look at everything,” he points out. “We get better response from the smaller ones, and we’re members of the Texas Library Association. It helps to get to know them better.”

 

At the point we spoke with Bourgeois, he had already uploaded more than 60 Texas Authors titles to SELF-e. Doing so many of his members’ uploads, he says with a laugh, has probably made him one of the most experienced authors around at how the process works.

 

“It’s not too labor-intensive,” he finds, by spacing out the sessions he spends uploading members’ ebooks.

 

“Turns out, the easiest thing was for me to just say, ‘Send me the info, and I’ll do the submissions for you.'”

 

And he’s hoping to encourage more of the membership to get involved.

 

“We’re eager to get everybody we can in there,” Bourgeois says.

 

 

Article was originally published on Self-e Blog on March 8, 2016

 

 

TEXAS AUTHORS HOLD THEIR DEAR TEXAS EVENT OF 2016

 

TEXAS—A group of Texas talented, motivating and innovative authors and educationists, who understand and believe that good education can only be achieved primarily through effective reading and writing, have gathered together with their experiences and expertise to create a platform for sensitization and mobilization of young Texans towards reading and writing. This platform is known as DEAR Texas.

 

DEAR Texas which connotes “Drop Everything And Read” is a state wide event that brings Texan authors and readers together. It is planned to celebrate and create in the memories of the people the consciousness that greatness as an individual or a nation depends on the ability to read and write.

 

DEAR Texas is established with the mandate to encourage people of all ages to read more and re-discover the fun, excitement and joy associated with learning new things through reading.  And this has been the driving force of the organization and it has yielded numerous fruits since its establishment.

 

This organization is holding the second edition of its annual celebration on the 16th and 17th of April, 2016. This forum creates room for authors to stand before the audience and introduce their books and also raise fund for the organizations literacy programs.

 

This is the time to act. Why not use this opportunity to get acquainted with the authors in your neighborhood and tap from their wealth of experiences. Why not be part of this crusade for the liberation of the younger generation? Why not contribute your on quota in this literacy programs and drop one book in the hands of one student in Texas. The time is now, pick your phone and call 512-210-0568 or log into the site http://DearTexas.info  for further details.  

 

# # #

 

 Scheduled for April 8 & 9, 2017

To find locations where authors will be attending, please click on the link Dear Texas events above.  A drop down list of locations will be displayed.  We are updating these pages on a regular basis, so please visit us again for more authors and locations.

 

TEXAS—Texas Authors will span the state for a weekend of book signings and readings in bookstores, grocery stores, libraries and schools to showcase their individual and collective talents as storytellers in all genres.

  

This third event is expected to be the largest yet, with up to 250 authors presenting their works across the state.  Bookstore giant, Barnes & Noble, as well as 30 plus indie bookstores will host authors throughout the weekend. In addition select Kroger’s grocery stores, and other locations will also spotlight our great Texas talent.

  

DEAR Texas is established with the mandate of encouraging people of all ages to read more and rediscover the fun, excitement and joy associated with learning new things through the pages of books. This has been the driving force of the organization and has yielded numerous fruits since its inception.

  

In addition to the DEAR Texas event, the organization has donated books valuing at over $20,000 to schools and libraries during the past two years. They also created the Super Readers, four loveable characters, who show children and adults that through reading, they too can become their own Super Hero.

 

To learn more about participating authors and where they will be for this event, please visit the organizations web site at http://DearTexas.info.  DEAR Texas graciously accepts donations for its literacy program that helps get books into the hands of those in need, plus schools and libraries.

 

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