Cheri Cowell

Cheri Cowell

Marketing Ideas From Cheri Cowell

We know that marketing is all about building relationships. We know that when people feel connected to us, they buy books from us. But did you know that book readings are a great way to build community? Whether you write fiction or non-fiction, a book reading is a wonderful way to make new friends, introduce yourself to new readers, and get the word out about your book. Here are a few ideas to help you take advantage of this tool.

First, look at your book and determine the best part to use for a reading. If it is fiction, perhaps you want to read a dramatic scene, a climatic scene, or an introductory scene. If it is non-fiction and you have a story or narrative part of the book, that would make a good choice. Offer to share a 1-3 minute “how the book came about” introduction before the reading. Then read for not more than 5-10 minutes and follow with an author Q & A. I always bring candy or chocolate to share with a free bookmark to give to each person attending. The whole thing can take less than a half an hour, and it is fun!

Next, determine where to set up your reading. Some of these may seem obvious, but others may stir your imagination. Don’t be limited by the list–the possibilities are only limited by your creativity.

Give a Book Reading

  1. Your local coffee shop
  2. A hospital gift shop
  3. A retirement community
  4. A nursing home
  5. A community center
  6. A local gift shop or garden center
  7. The library (try the five closest to your house)
  8. The local community college
  9. A school, kids aftercare, a playground
  10. The main setting of your book???

My Bible study, Parables and Word Pictures, had a sheep on the front cover so it was perfect to offer a reading at a local petting zoo–near the sheep, of course. Let your mind roam and then share what you come up with. I’d love to hear from you.


Cheri Cowell is the author of several books including Parables and Word Pictures in the AMG Following God Bible study series and Living the Story: Reaching Outside the Church Walls. Her new devotional book, 365 Days for Peace, releases in December.

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