It’s your LAUNCH PARTY. Don’t fuck it up.


Amy’s Launch Party Dos and Don’ts

  1. Notify the bookstore in advance that you’re planning to have your launch there. They tend to be real party-poopers when you just show up with a margarita machine,a fajita grill, and a Mariachi band.
  2. Don’t go to someone else’s launch expecting to be able to co-host it. That writer may be a diva who insists on being the center of attention; some authors are real assholes.
  3. A bouncy castle is a great touch.
  4. Remember to breathe as you read your entire book to the audience.
  5. If you plan to make your launch a costume party event, consider the image you are trying to project. Does slutty nurse fit into your author “brand”? Or would slutty maid be a better fit?
  6. Clowns are weird and can distract from the main event. Unless you are the one coming as a clown, and then it’s fine.
  7. A full-size ice sculpture of Margaret Atwood is a nice way to pay homage to those who came before.
  8. Require each guest to purchase ten copies of your book. Require them to buy ten copies of mine as well.
  9. Bring a gift to the bookstore staff. These hardworking folks stay late at these events and help in many ways. Consider giving a half dozen or so Koi fish, a copy of your epic unpublished manuscript, or, if you’re feeling especially generous, invite them to take the melting Margaret Atwood ice sculpture home in a cab.
  10. Bring an assortment of religious leaders to bless your event.
  11. If no one shows up, lower your volume as you read; your voice will carry quite well in an empty room.
  12. Swag is a MUST! Consider original ideas, like more Koi fish, or condoms with your book cover imprinted on the packaging. Sex sells. (This is actually an excellent idea. I’m going to do this at my next launch, so no copycatting, please. Dibs.)
  13. This is your moment to shine, so relish that time in the spotlight. Consider singing something mildly challenging, like Beyonce’s, Love on Top, and/or performing an interpretive dance.
  14. Thank no one. There’s no time for that shit, and nobody cares. (Village Shmillage.)
  15. Stamina! Remember to stay hydrated by drinking vodka from a Nalgene bottle.

Author: Amy Poeppel

Amy Poeppel grew up in Dallas, Texas and left the south to attend Wellesley College. Since then, she has worked as an actor, a high school English teacher, and most recently as the Assistant Director of Admissions at a school in New York City. Her three fabulous boys are all off in Boston attending school, and she and her husband now split their time between New York and Frankfurt, Germany. A theatrical version of SMALL ADMISSIONS was workshopped at the Actors Studio Playwrights/Directors Unit. She later expanded it into her first novel.

6 Replies to “It’s your LAUNCH PARTY. Don’t fuck it up.”

  1. Yes! As I prepare for my own launch party in a couple of months, I plan on printing out this list and using it as my bible. Thank you for making me laugh just as I was beginning to stress out. Slutty maid, here I come!

  2. OMG! I can’t even imagine not announcing I’m going to be there (#1) … How about getting permission, signing the contract and arranging treats, etc…. I just had a heart attack. I was so OCD when I arranged mine….. on the border of paranoia!

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