Monday, April 19, 2010

Goodies and Give-Aways

I’m going to begin with a flat out confession (don't worry, this sounds much more dramatic than it is): I’m not sure which goodies make the best give-away treats for the wonderful readers that I get the opportunity to meet and speak with. I’d love to find the perfect gesture of appreciation (no, not bribery) for those who show interest in my books, but sometimes this is easier said than done. Bookmarks, of course, are fabulous, but most authors give these out. Wouldn’t it be great to do something different?

Imagine that you are at an event with an author. And this author has goodies that promote his or her novels. What trinkets or do-dads are most appealing to you and, therefore, remind you of the author’s books? Here are some examples, in alphabetical order, of things that I’ve given away at events or know that other authors have had available:


CDs (with a recording of part of the book being read aloud)



crossword puzzles (the novel has to be read in order to fill in the blank spaces)

key chains with novel title or cover art

magnets of novel book jacket

notepads with images and/or titles of novels

pens and/or pencils with novel title etched in the plastic or wood

postcards with cover art on the front and a book description on the back

posters of books

self-stick notes with novel title and/or cover image

stickers of novel book jacket

T-shirts with novel art and title, perhaps a blurb from the book

Have I missed any great ideas? I’d love to know what you would most like to pick up at an author event. I think that I’d most like pens or pencils or notepads. But maybe that’s just me. At most of my school visits, the students have been excited about the book cover stickers. At a recent bookstore event for educators, the teachers loved the self-stick notes with the Dog Gone and the Buck Fever cover art.

What would you like best?


  1. these are some great ideas! I need to get my brain working along these lines. My novel doesn't come out until next year so I've not had this issue or opportunity. Where do you purchase the swag? How do you get the cover on it(assuming they give you a jpeg, so that's probably it)...

    I bet they love the goodies on your visits. who wouldn't?

  2. That a lot of excellent good different stuff. How about a reuseable tote bag and/or coffee mug with cover art and/or book title?

  3. Nice list Cynthia. I read another blog with a similar topic. Among the suggested list of swag, one sticks out for me - temporary tattoo's.

  4. Ah, Tess, you are in for some fun! I love Check them out. You can even call and design whatever you'd like with a Vista Print rep. And yes, jpegs of book covers go a long way.

    Bish, a tote and a coffee mug are great ideas! Thank you!

    And Terry Lynn, temporary tattoos are fabulous! I will definitely be looking into those. Thank you so much!!!