How did you start your reading tour

Organize a reading: Author Regina Schlager explains how it's done

Image: Regina Schlager argues with her book "Leading courageously with the heart" for a new understanding of leadership from the perspective of women.

Presenting your own book live to the public for the first time - an exciting performance! Perhaps you have not even thought about it or you would like to hold a reading and have respect for the task.

Be that as it may, getting advice from like-minded people - i.e. other authors - is essential for all marketing activities. You should definitely take advantage of this opportunity. We spoke to tredition author Regina Schlager about how she organized her first reading.

The author is used to speaking in front of an audience due to her professional activity, but of course it was also a challenge for her to design a reading. Good planning is the be-all and end-all. Read for yourself in the following interview how Regina Schrader went about it and what she told her fellow authors- recommends to colleagues in detail.

We hope you enjoy reading it!


From the idea to the book

tredition: How did the idea for your book come about?

Image: In October 2017, Regina Schlager's first dialogue reading took place on her book “Courageously leading with the heart. Talks with women who shape their vocation «.

Regina Schlager:In 2015 I hosted an online conference. For a week I had talks with coaches, counselors and therapists on the subject of calling. They talked about their lives and gave tips on what is helpful in shaping their own path from their point of view. I received feedback from many listeners that the interviews were encouraging and reinforcing. That inspired me to also offer the articles in book form. In the book I wanted to get more involved with my own voice than at the conference. So I wrote introductory chapters that provide a framework and a red thread.

tredition: When did you start organizing the first readings?

Regina Schlager:Before publishing it, I thought about hosting a book premiere. But so much came together: the completion of the book in addition to my coaching work was already quite demanding. I set other marketing priorities and decided not to hold readings for the time being. What took place soon after the publication was a panel discussion with one of the interviewees from the book on a thematic aspect. That's when I was invited. But I haven't lost sight of the subject of reading.

A few months ago I suddenly realized that the time had come. I set about organizing my first reading. And suddenly there was a flash of inspiration: "This is going to be a series of events!", In the form of a mixture of reading and dialogue, on the various aspects that are highlighted in the book. The theme at the start on October 5th is “Mindfulness with a focus on being a woman in business”. I have already set the next reading for January 31, on the subject of "Charismatic appearance".

Planning and organizing a reading

tredition: How should an author go about planning and organizing a reading?

Image: The Aletheja - Center of Creativity in Trittligasse in Zurich offered a tasteful and pleasant setting for the reading by tredition author Regina Schlager.

Regina Schlager: I recommend keeping a to-do list, for example I do this in my word processing program. First of all, I record ideas and questions in a document and add to them on an ongoing basis. I also keep a press distribution list in Excel. And with Trello, I have an online tool that is good for project management. I keep important dates and deadlines in my online calendar so that I don't lose sight of anything.

I find it important to set priorities in marketing activities: What do I want to do, what is realistic given the time I have? Which has the greater effect? What do I enjoy?

tredition: What aspects does an author have to consider when organizing a reading?

Regina Schlager:The following points must be observed in detail:

The target group: Who do I want to reach with the reading? That can then be a factor for the venue.

The organizer: Do I want to organize the reading myself - or is there an institution that might be interested in this and that invites me to a reading?

Which contacts do I already have valuable synergies?

Image: It is important to determine in advance how the reading is to be designed and carried out, i.e. which text passages are to be read, whether the audience should be involved, etc.

What atmosphere do I want? For example, I opted for a rather small frame for my first two readings. The space is limited to 20 participants. I was able to rent a very nice room in the middle of the old town of Zurich through a colleague, which I have already known from events. Working with my colleague around the reading is very collegial and uncomplicated, which makes it easier for me to get started with the readings. At the moment I am mainly addressing people who already know me: from my network, customers, colleagues, friends and acquaintances who I know are interested in the topic.

Then of course you have to consider how you want to structure the reading: which passages, how much should be read? Are the listeners involved in any way? Is there perhaps also a supporting program, e.g. musical interludes? Do I offer drinks or even small snacks?

How would I like to present the book after the reading? How many copies are on display (I have to order them in advance)? Do I offer to sign books after the reading?

How much budget is available? That is of course a crucial factor. Do I ask for an entrance fee?

Do I want people to sign up? If yes how? I myself use Eventbrite, a tool where you can register online. This gives me an overview of when the 20 participants have been reached. And I can send them reminder emails too.

Avoid mistakes - but how?

tredition: Which mistakes should an author avoid?

Regina Schlager:Not at all easy to say. I'm only just trying it out and I'm sure to come across things that haven't proven themselves. In no case should one have expectations that are too high at the first reading. Just because I announce a reading doesn't necessarily mean hundreds of people crowd into a huge hall that I rented at a high price. It cannot be ruled out that this can happen, but very often the rush will not be so great at first. In addition, it is a misconception that, for example, a one-time announcement of the reading on Facebook is sufficient as marketing. The drum of advertising must be more versatile and louder on as many channels as possible so that many people are made aware of the event.

Image: It is important that when you organize your reading, you get the message across on as many channels as possible.

The day of the reading

tredition: What is particularly important on the day of the reading?

Regina Schlager:It is important not to have to organize too much on the day of the reading. It is best to go to the reading in good time and as relaxed as possible. There is certainly excitement for everyone. A little movement, breathing or vocal exercises, maybe moments of silence and concentration help here.

If you have a lot of stage fright or a very insecure voice, then voice or performance training can help in the long term. It could also be that the voice tires very quickly while reading, one has the feeling that one is speaking too softly or too indistinctly. Very few are born professionals here, development is allowed here. You don't have to pretend: you can be authentic and develop yourself at the same time, that's not mutually exclusive.

Don't forget to take important materials with you: copies of books, flyers or business cards if you have them.

After the reading: Don't be too critical of yourself. Celebrate having held the reading. Maybe celebrate with others. Learn from experience.

about the author

Image: Regina Schlager in conversation with a listener at a reading.

Regina Schlager, born in Vienna in 1970, studied German and philosophy. She has many years of experience in knowledge management, learning and development, both in a medium-sized and an international consulting company. A health crisis in 2006 opened up an intensive phase of reorientation for her. She moved to Zurich and started her own business here in 2012.

Today, as a certified business coach, career coach and embodied life guide, she supports people in coming into contact with themselves and their vocation. It is of particular concern to her to help shape the change to meaningful work, cooperation and leadership. Courageous and with a heart.

In 2015 she founded and organized the first online appointment conference, writes regularly on her blog and gives the podcast »Shaping your calling. Self, Sense, Leadership «.