Virtual Book Launches are simple to plan and execute–as long as you prepare ahead–and with a few steps, authors and illustrators can organize and host their own engaging online events! We’ve also seen some of our authors and illustrators expand these into their own critique and debut groups with great success.
Decide what platform you’d like to use and create a meeting link (we have found that Zoom works well for these events). We *highly* recommend that you use a sign-up service like SignUp Genius to have attendees sign up for your Virtual Book Launch, and then send your meeting link to them (a free version of SignUp Genius is available).
Schedule a date and begin advertising your VBL several weeks out on your social media platforms and via email.
Enlist your friends, family, and writers/illustrators groups to help promote your event.
Plan the timeline of your VBL, including when you will end the event.
Ask a friend to host your event and then provide questions for your friend to ask you.
Choose passages ahead of time to read aloud to attendees.
If you are an illustrator, share your illustrations at different points of development.
Discuss your creative process.
End your event with a book giveaway! (There are several online generators that will allow you to insert the number of attendees–from 1 to 20, for example–to randomly select a winner. Then simply count to find that attendee on your screen, list, etc.)’
Schedule a Q&A time towards the end of your VBL for attendees to ask questions. This part is often the most fun!
Make sure to be online at least 15 minutes before your event begins to work out any technical issues.
Once you have planned your event, tag us on social media so we can share it!
Facebook: @SCBWI-Carolinas Group; @SCBWI-Carolinas PAL Group; @SCBWI-Carolinas Working Illustrators Network (WIN)