Book Signings Are Fun 101

To any authors and readers out there who haven’t been to a book signing, please do yourself a huge favour and go to one, or two or three!

Not only are they an opportunity for authors to market their books face to face, they are a fun and engaging way to have face to face interactions with both authors and readers.

A fun and encouraging atmosphere is what awaits and all you have to do is:

A:  author: turn up with a few books and a smile, perhaps a few bookmarks to give out

B:  reader: turn up with a smile and don’t be scared to say hello to the authors who  are probably more nervous than you!

I’ve just had the pleasure of experiencing the amazing Books by the Bridge author event on Feb 18th in Sydney. Organised to absolute perfection by author Kat T Masen, this was a brilliant networking opportunity where I met authors I’d only known through social media and for the first time had readers come to me looking for my second book which was an absolute buzz.

Whilst I collected a lovely stash of  autographed books that I shall treasure from Amanda Howard, L.L.Hunter, RKRhyde and Marie Lewis, I also sold many of my books which is much more rewarding when you can do it face to face. Seeing who buys your books, talking to them and getting to know them a little is just an absolute honour.

It is an opportunity that is not to be missed if your an author. It doesn’t have to be an expensive exercise. I’ve watched and learned from other authors how to create well priced bookmarks and other book swag to give out in a way that doesn’t break the bank but also are lovely enough to make the reader, or potential reader feel valued when you offer them a gift.

They are a  brilliant occasion to reach out to readers who are new to you and ones who are fans. An opportunity to give them your best, to mingle and learn from other authors. Its a brilliant opportunity to see the marketing strategies that work and the ones that don’t and more than anything, its perfection for crafting that 10 second pitch that draws a potential reader to your table.

Book expos are fun. The hardest part is the packing and unpacking…the rest is just a whole lot of fun. If you haven’t been to one I truly recommend them as a brilliant day out.


Exciting Authory Events

I have a very exciting year so far this year. Many more events are booked in for book signings.

First up is Books by The Bridge at the Crystal Ballroom at Sydney Luna Park on February 18th.


This is a fabulous mix of Australian and international authors ready to meet and great with booklovers of all persuasions. It has been a fabulous run up to this event as I have met some absolutely fabulous authors on social media  It will be wonderful to put names and faces together.

Melbourne and Sydney Supanova are my next stop. April and June will be very busy organising all my books and swag.  Loved Supanova immensely last year  A fun-filled, character-filled feast of everything cosplay and unique. I thoroughly look forward to attending both of these very well organised and attended events.


The last event I have booked is Riveting Reads this October, in Brisbane. This will be my first trip to QLD in an author capacity and I’m really thrilled.  I’m staying with a fellow author so I anticipate a fabulous time at this author event




Until then, keep an eye on my social media sites for dates, updates and further details about these awesome bookish events.

IG: @grthomas2014

Twitter: @grthomas2014

FB: G.R.Thomas Books

FB: Grace Rose Thomas


Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

Well, I have to say when it comes to blogging I’m rather rubbish. I am publically proclaiming to remedy this, so you all must keep me honest.

What has happened since I last posted? So, so much.

Most excitedly the sequel to Awaken has been released and is receiving some fabulous reviews which just makes my authory heart sing.

Here is a little excerpt from surrender:

Chapter One

Chapter One excerpt


A door creaked open. I shut my eye again and held my breath, trying to control the panic of not knowing where I was. What the hell just happened? I attempted to fake sleep whilst straining every other sense to ascertain what was going on. My spine burned instinctively, a raw reminder of my new and unpredictable power.

Deep breath in, deep breath out, repeat.

Keep it cool Soph. My thoughts raced and my senses kicked into overdrive; taking in every smell, sound and whisper of movement.

I had to work out what was going on before my whacked out Angelic body decided to put on its own light show.

Ashes and spice. No!



It’s been such a different experience releasing book 2. The support , the confidence and the enjoyment has been exponentially more fantastic. For the first time I sent ARCS out and this was a wonderful experience where readers were putting up their hands to have a copy pre-release. I can’t describe how wonderful that feeling is.

So now I am looking to book 3, the final instalment of my trilogy. I’m in the beginning stages and the ideas are firing quicker than I can type them down.

Until Redemption, book 2, hits the shelves I am content to enjoy the warm welcome that Surrender has received.

Happy reading and happy writing


The Art of Marketing a Book

Now don’t be fooled by the title that this is a how to. It certainly isn’t. It’s far from it actually. What it is, in fact, is my ever growing insights into the immense amount of effort an indie author must go to, to get their work noticed.

This time last year, I can guarantee you that not a soul was interested in either me or my book. I was in limbo, author no-mans land and not an olive branch to grasp.

Today, I have people reaching out to me to read my book, to compliment my work, to ask me how to write a book and offers to beta read my just finished sequel! How freaky is that? A complete 360 change from no-one to someone that might nearly be considered somewhat of an author that a reader might like to get to know 🙂

This has been achieved through no less that throwing myself out there in the big scary social media world. At first I was lost,  slowly I weaved my way into conversations that seemed fun, interesting and inspiring. From there I have had the utter privilege of meeting the most wonderful authors and readers who have not only made me laugh and smile, but also offered the hand of friendship and support.

It is an interesting balance of give and take. I find great joy in sharing the works of other authors that I love. I enjoy reading snippets of their lives and watching them progress through the same stages that I do. What do I get in return for such a wonderful interactive experience? A return of that same joy for my writing, my silly posts and the snippets of my life that I share. In developing these enviable friendships I have unwittingly marketed my book in the most positive and enjoyable way.

On the flip side is the face to face marketing. Now that is truly challenging. I have , after immense effort and many knockbacks, managed to have Awaken accepted into three independent bookshops here in Melbourne. Benn’s Books, Beaumaris Books and Farrell’s Books. I thank them so deeply for taking a risk on me.  It was such a fabulous success after so much hang-ups and “thanks but no thanks.”

I suppose my point is that you really don’t get anything without putting in . Everyday I work on promoting my book, every single day and it is slowly paying off. Not in monetary terms, because lets be honest, you only make money writing if you’re Stephen King or the like… unless you get that movie deal! The pay off is seeing your book featured on someone’s blog, a new 5 star review and just the simplicity of the fact that you entertained  someone on the other side of the world.

That’s the payoff for me for all the closed doors and ear-bashing that’s now opening up those same doors.

Updates on reading and writing

Its been a while since I’ve blogged. I’m quite slack with it, I have to admit that. However, what I’m doing when I’m not blogging is….writing! Lots of writing. I’ve recently had an explosion of inspiration and motivation that has seen me reach the final chapters of Surrender, the sequel to Awaken.

In between running a household chock-full of kids an animals, its a crazy busty schedule. I did had quite a writing lull over the recent school holidays but I’m back full force. My local cafe sets a cosy scene where I can float away o a river of coffee as I zone out of reality and into Sophia’s strange and frightening world.

For those who’ve read Awaken, poor Soph, she doesn’t cop much of a break. It’s an uphill battle the whole way. *evil laughing* I’m loving how she’s developing though. She’s vulnerable yet strong, and getting stronger with each new challenge.

I recently asked a question of my IG friends. What does an author do when a character is so alive that they are insistent on how I write them? One character is screaming at me each time I wont allow her to use a swear word. It sounds ridiculous but I actually feel like she’s glaring back up at me from the computer, hands on hips and saying “Really? You really gonna dumb me down like that?”

She’s trouble and I love her. Thoughts on appropriately placed cursing? Not that she’s going to listen or care either way!

Now to reading. Wow, I’ve read some thrilling new books, most of which are self-published indies. The highlight has been The Making of Gabriel Davenport by Beverley Lee. I’ve probably mentioned it before, but I loved it THAT much.  If you love dark fantasy, grab a copy like, yesterday! Another is the Colours of Immortality by J.M.Muller. If you’d like a fresh take on the Zombie/undead formula check this out too. Its totally unique. The pace is quick, no dragging boring bits and its left me wanting to know a whole lot more about this new breed of monster that she has created.

Another recent read was Hell’s Teeth by James Fahy. Not an Indie but it’s the second book of his that I’ve read and completely loved it. Again, another clever twist of the Vampire genre that strays perfectly away from the same run of the mill vampire tale.

Pretty much the most exciting thing I’ve read though I can’t even talk about. I did my first Beta Read. Simply a wonderful honour and a thrill to be the first set of eyes on the planet to read this incredible story.

Love to hear what you guys are reading and writing



So, over the past year I’ve been busting my little Aussie buns with this whole social media game. I’m as far from proficient at understanding the inner workings and nuisances as one could be, yet I can now ‘tag’ on Instagram! Yay for me.

It felt like a lot of one sided conversations for a long time. There I was sending out my little comments and book promotions to the vacuum of twitter, FB and Instagram. There were times I honestly thought ,”hello, is anyone out there?”

Well, what I’ve learned is patience, a skill that often eludes me! Patience and persistence and joining in the journeys of other people, be they readers or authors. That patience is staring to pay off and in more than just getting Awaken noticed. I’m making some wonderful online friends who make me laugh from across the globe, all the way to just down the road.

Instagram by far is my favourite online play ground. What a beautiful community of like-minded individuals. The love for books and reading on this medium restores my faith for the brains and imaginations of the future, that they will be full to brimming with stimulation and inspiration to keep the written word a sacred and powerful medium.

The support I’ve received recently on these forum is nothing short of humbling and I delight in offering that back to others. Supporting other indie authors as well as traditionally published authors has given me two things:

1: people who get it, who understand the pathway of an indie author and an incredible amount of positive support that goes mutually both ways.

2: the discovery of books, great books, amazing books I may not have ever come across otherwise simply because they are self published. I’ve read, and I am currently reading some fantastic stories that just prove you don’t need to be picked up the mega machine publishing houses to tell a good story.

So, networking…its an important part of the self-publishing process. Patience and persistence are an essential part of networking. None of these will work independently of the other. The writing of the story,that’s fun, sometimes mind-numbing, but mainly fun. The networking is where you really put your nose to the grindstone as an indie author and only just now am I really understanding the importance of it.

To everyone I’ve met so far, thankyou, thankyou and thankyou. Its been fun so far.