Congratulations!  You’ve finished the final manuscript, ARCs are rolling out to reviewers, and you’re waiting for the big publication date to arrive so you can tell friends and family where to pick up your book.  Only one thing left to do – promote, promote, promote.  A book signing or reading might be nice, but can you be sure how many people will attend?  What good is a reading if only five people are there to hear you?

Enter Togather.com, a fresh, new site that enables an author to get commitments from fans to attend a book signing, before actually committing to hold the signing. Think of it as a Kickstarter-like fansourcing platform for authors, fans, and “hosts” of signing or reading events. If the prescribed (by author) number of fans pledge to attend, the event will “turn on,” making it the real deal.  And best of all? The service is totally free to the author. The site collects a small fee from event attendees if the author’s minimum criteria for accepting an event are satisfied (i.e. either enough people RSVPed or bought enough books or tickets for the author to say yes).

The site launched in August and is currently still in beta, but that might make it the best time to test the waters, as it has already been featured in Publisher’s Weekly, Fast Company, and other news outlets. Authors are featured prominently on the site and can link their Twitter feeds and websites and include their book’s cover image and description, so at the very least, they are getting good exposure for free, as people come to check out the site.

While an author can use the site to tell friends and family about an upcoming event (and secure their RSVP), it’s also an interesting tool that makes authors available to fans in a way that wouldn’t have been possible without social media innovation.

Check out the write-up on Mediabistro, where a video and more intricate description of the site’s offerings are provided.

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