Book Signings in the E-Book Age

AliceHoffmanMagicI  recently attended a talk by one of my favorite authors, Alice Hoffman, in conjunction with the release of her new book, The Museum of Extraordinary Things.  After her remarks and question and answer session, she manned the obligatory book signing table and graciously posed with readers and signed their copies of her book.  I loved books signed by the author and have quite a few.  I’ll never send them off to the church fundraiser or the library donation box like so many others when my shelves threaten to collapse, because they have been made unique by a signature.  Then I started thinking, with the rise in popularity of the e-book, what is to become of author signings?  Will it become some quaint relic of the past like dance cards, phone books, and record albums? I hope not!  What can possibly replace this special author-reader ritual in the digital world? And moreover, what will become of the book collectors, the special or rare editions?  How about the body of evidence testifying to the lives of these men and women of letters– the memoirs and letters, works written in their youth, the juvenilia?  Will we be able to reconstruct these things from tweets, blog posts, and Facebook?

1 Comment

Filed under Book Review

One response to “Book Signings in the E-Book Age

  1. Chris Sullivan

    It must have been an interesting talk. I have read The Museum of Extraordinary Things and reviewed it on my Voyage Out Blog. Regarding your question, “what is to become of author signings?” I believe authors will still want a connection to their readers and most readers will want to see and hear their favourite authors. Book Festivals in the UK are seeing an increase in numbers year after year and more and more of the ‘big’ names in literature are appearing at these festivals. And by the way in the bookshop where I volunteer we have seen an big increase in the selling of record albums. 🙂
    Let’s hope that book signings, lectures, talks and Q&As by authors will never go out of fashion.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s