Since COVID-19 struck, many libraries, like mine, have moved their author visits to virtual spaces. Many libraries are offering virtual events, including presentations by guest authors, every day of the week.
I’ve seen virtual events use Zoom, YouTube, Skype, Instagram Stories, Facebook Live, Crowdcast and other similar and emerging technologies. Each has advantages and drawbacks.
The library, the author, and the publisher should promote the event. It’s so great that viewers can join from anywhere! The author’s own social media following can help greatly increase viewership.
MORE THAN A BOOK TALK: You may be very surprised at all the virtual events your local library offers—everything from book discussions to storytime for children to presentations by guest authors. There may even be a full event that has “gone virtual.” Example: The Orlando Book Festival is a day-long celebration of books usually held at the Orlando Public Library. We’re going virtual for 2021! Join us for panels, writing workshops, and more from bestselling authors from all over the country. Enjoy an opening session with Angie Thomas, in conversation with Ayana Gray, and a closing keynote from Alyssa Cole.
And, remember—you are NOT LIMITED to checking your local library’s website for virtual events, or to introduce yourself as an author who is available to give a virtual presentation. Any library, in any town, can host virtual events, as we see in the example of our author, Lee Tran, who lives in Florida but I saw her live presentation hosted by a Wisconsin library! Take a look!
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