Havant Literary Festival appearance by the Deadly Dames went well, even though the audience wasn’t as large as expected. (Half those who’d bought advance tickets didn’t turn up – maybe the rain daunted them?) Great fun had by all who were there, though.
Sometimes, on the face of it, Literary Festivals may not seem worthwhile. Attendance can be patchy (one participant at another Havant event had come all the way from London and only had nine in the audience) and you don’t sell that many books. But they can generate publicity, both pre and post event, some of which might be getting your name into new places and in front of different people. Sometimes these things generate sales post event, rather than at the time, because people go off and think about whether they’ll buy your work. This is particularly applicable if they prefer e-books.
You also make connections, get to meet new people, have your name alongside those of authors who might be significant in your genre. For me, that’s one of the greatest rewards. How else would I get to be on a panel with people like Rebecca Tope, as I was at Bognor?
So roll on 2015, and the panels/Fests that may turn up – like the gay romance panel at Purbeck Literary Festival, which just needs final confirmation!