Summer, Wine, and Books—A Recipe for Local Author Events

Traditionally Challenged: Navigating the Publishing Labyrinth grit

Exciting news flash: I’m having a book launch for the first in my 7 Deadly Sins Series, A Margin of Lust.

I’m sure you see why this is exciting for me, but why should you give a rip? Because I applied techniques I learned at The Southern California Writer’s Conference in San Diego this past February. I think my plan will be a success.

If I can do it, so can you.

I attended a workshop about how to have a successful in-person event presented by a panel of authors. Each talked candidly about what worked, and what didn’t. Here are the bullet points I came away with:

Collaborate with others who attract a similar audience.

This doesn’t have to be exclusively authors. In fact, there’s less competition for book sales if you collaborate with people in other fields. For instance Oz Monroe,  author of Soil Man, an award winning dark fantasy novel, joined forces with an artist, a musician and other creatives whose audiences were similar to his target market. Their event had a huge turnout and everyone did well.

Chose interesting and appropriate venues.

Your book launch doesn’t have to be in a book store. Eric Peterson, author of The Dining Car, a story about a food critic and wine and liquor connoisseur, has held reading events at liquor distilleries and craft cocktail bars. The owner at one establishment signed bottles while Eric signed books.

Use your book as a calling card for speaking engagements

Our books are more than plot. There’s an underlying theme. Generally it’s something we care deeply about or we wouldn’t have bothered to write three hundred pages on the topic. Can that subject be turned into an opportunity to speak? Author Claudia Whitsitt writes young adult suspense with highly charged themes like bullying and racial discrimination. She’s spoken at many schools hungry for interesting ways to get that positive word across.

I took those points to heart and here’s what I came up with.

My books take place in Southern Orange County, where I live. My target audience is primarily career women who like a little murder and mystery in their lives. There’s also a prevalent wine component in my first story.

What better place to hold a book launch than a winery?

The Swanner House, named a historic landmark by the city of San Juan Capistrano, is home to A Stone’s Throw Winery. Its Craftsman era tasting room, dry water tower, and speak-easy style garage inspired me. It’s a great backdrop for dark stories. Oh, and did I mention it’s supposed to be haunted?

The owners were so excited, we decided to throw three Murder, Mystery, and Mayhem Sundays in 2017 with live music, raffles, wine tasting, author readings and book signings. They also worked with my publisher to create A Margin of Lust and Stone’s Throw wine glasses to be given out at the first event.

I’m not only launching my book, but I’m getting to do something else that’s important to me—support other local writers. I’ll be the M.C. at future events. If you live in the area, I hope you’ll save the dates. (Click here for the details.)

If you’ve been thinking about doing some book promotion this summer, I challenge you to ponder these ideas, come up with something fun and creative, and invite me!


Greta Boris, Director

Greta Boris Director

Greta Boris is the author of the 2017 releases, A Margin of Lust and The Scent of Wrath, the first two books in her 7 Deadly Sins domestic suspense series.

She’s published articles on culture, health, and entertainment for a variety of national magazines including Victorian Homes, Zombies, 50 Scariest Movies, Exodus, and Women of the Bible. She’s also the author of the Amazon Kindle Bestseller The Wine and Chocolate Workout – Sip, Savor, and Strengthen for a Healthier Life.

You can visit her at She describes her work (and her life) as an O.C. housewife meets Dante’s Inferno.

*O.C. Writers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. By clicking on the book links anywhere on this site, we earn a small commission from your purchase.

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