Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Learning more about book launches

It has been another busy few days here in cold Tasmania. Snow has been forecast for today on the mountains down south. Fortunately where we live in the north on the shores of the Tamar River we are at sea level. While still cold it has been raining here this morning and thankfully no frost. The sun peeped out a few minutes ago and we’ve even turned the heating down but it is still cold – well for this old Queenslander who still has blood that doesn’t like the cold at all!
Last Friday was also cold with a little rain but it didn’t stop us driving about fifty minutes to take our grandsons to the book launch of Potato Music in Launceston. The internet certainly has made our ‘writer’s world’ a small place. The newsletter of Omega Writers, a Christian writers’ group in Queensland arrived in my email. I had to read Zaphon to discover that a Launceston author was launching her children’s picture book here. I have since discovered the editor of the newsletter heard about it from Adelaide!
It is school holidays in Tasmania and there were a good number of children and parents at the launch by one of our state politicians. The award winning author, Christina Booth, told us how this story of her heart took six years to evolve to be this beautifully illustrated book. Years ago she asked her mother about their old piano stool that had been brought to Australia when her mother migrated from Europe after World War II. It was the catalyst for this delightful, thought  provoking book. Christina sat on the stool and read us the story. Then, as in the book, there was piano music with folk invited to dance to it as Christina’s mother had danced while war planes flew overhead.

The blurb says, ‘Wherever there is war there is hardship, but wherever there is love there is hope. An uplifting, life affirming story about keeping your dreams alive.” Although our grandsons were a little too young to understand all the concepts, we were able to share later with them how war affects children and their parents. This is certainly a book for all ages and perhaps best read with our children to facilitate discussion.

And now, a confession from this multi-published novelist! Until I became a member of the Society Women Writers Tasmania, I had never given a thought to actually having a book launch of any of my novels.
So, with the support of these writers, I did have them for my 17th and 18th titles, Return to Baragula and Outback From Baragula.
It was pretty nerve-wracking, very worthwhile but I am still learning about organising book launches.

With the president of SWWT and the Launceston mayor's wife, Lyndle van Zetten who launched Return to Baragula.

With Julie Ferguson who launched 
Outback From Baragula 

I do know Christina should have been very encouraged by the long queue of folk buying her book after the launch.
So, I would love to hear from readers and other authors what you think about book launches?

Have you been to a book launch you thought was very well done? Do tell us about it.

What may best be done to encourage folk to attend - and also to buy the book – like I bought the Potato Music! Do leave your comments.

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