On Friday 17 August the Australian Romance Readers Association held an epic book-signing event in conjunction with the annual Romance Writers of Australia conference on the Gold Coast. In the end we had 65 romance authors signing–a couple of authors had to withdraw in the week before the signing, but we then gained one on the day.
We started set up of the room from about 2 pm on the Friday afternoon, and with the help of a number of member volunteers we quickly had it all ready to go:
The books out on the table were those that Harlequin Australia had very generously supplied for all their authors–nearly 1000 books were available for readers to pick up for free. As usual these proved very popular and many readers left with more books than they could comfortably carry.
We also had three lucky door prizes–enormous boxes filled with items donated by all the signing authors. Everyone who attended the signing received a free ticket for this draw. Here are the winners:
We also ran a separate “signature hunter” prize for those who managed to collect a signature from each author in their souvenir booklet. Only four managed to accomplish this, and a random draw awarded the prize to Aimee.
This year we were extremely lucky to have the volunteer services of Marie Miller (aka Elle Fynllay), who is a professional photographer. So for the very first time we have a group photo of our signing authors – and what a group:
Feedback from both authors and readers has been extremely positive–everyone had such a wonderful time and they are already looking forward to the next one in Brisbane.
ARRA also had a trade stand at the conference on the Saturday. It was great fun to sit on the edges of the RWA conference and see just how skilled they are at bringing so many elements together to make the conference fabulous. I think we learnt a lot from them. And I’m pleased to say we have also received many new membership applications from the event.
As promised, I have brought back two of the souvenir booklets, which have been signed by all the authors that were there. (Many thanks to volunteer Tracey for taking them around the room to get them signed.) Any members who couldn’t make it to the signing have a chance to win one of these two books. Just sent us an email (at firstname.lastname@example.org) telling us how many authors are shown in the group photo above. Everyone who gets the number correct will go in the draw to win a booklet. The giveaway closes on 20 September.
We also have some booklets left over. If you are interested in purchasing one (they are $10 each, plus postage), contact us at email@example.com.