Last weekend, I was able to attend Holidays with the Belles in Dallas, Texas, with some friends that I met through bookstagram. This was my second year to go and it is still one of my favorite signings that I have ever gone to so I am sad that this was the last year. Signings always make me nervous and just a tad stressed because there are so many people and I am trying to get all of my books signed. It didn’t help that I was running around trying to see 21 authors! It was so worth it though and I got to see some great friends at the same time. So I thought I would do a little breakdown of how I prepped for the signing, the signing itself, and then the haul that I walked away with because it is kind of insane.
First Step: The first thing I did was start a spreadsheet with all of the books that I was planning on taking, the pre-orders I made, and the books I needed to buy for the signing beforehand. This really helped me stay organized and keep track of all of my books.
Second Step: Then, I went and pulled all the books I was taking with me off of my shelves and wrapped them in waterproof bags to keep them from getting damaged. It also really helped with packing them because there were no covers getting bent or packing them funny. I was able to fit all 86 books I was bringing with me in one giant suitcase. It was damn heavy, but I didn’t have to worry about that since I was driving.
Third Step: Packed up the car and hit the road!
Fourth Step: When I got the hotel, I put sticky notes with my name on them on the title page so that it makes it easier for authors to personalize my books. I also rubber banded all of the books I had for one author. This helped to pull them all out at once when I was ready to get them signed.
Fifth Step: I had printed out a map of where all of the authors were going to be set up. I color coded the map based on what I needed from each other. One color was for pre-orders, one color was for books I brought from home, and one color was for both. This helped come up with a game plan of who I would see first, especially since I knew I was going to have to make multiple trips up to the room to reload my cart.
Sixth Step: ATTEND THE SIGNING! I got in line with my friends at around 7 in the morning and the signing didn’t start until noon. We were second in line though so it worked out..haha. The first thing we did was go around and collect wristbands for the ticked authors so that we could jump in line whenever we were ready to get to them. The first author that I sprinted to after collecting wristbands was Teagan Hunter because I wanted a copy of her most recent release, Text Me Baby One More Time. Teagan is also such an inspiration to me with her weight loss journey so I wanted to be one of the first people to see her. I love meeting authors because they are people just like us and want to swoon about their books just as much as we do! They are always so appreciative and I love getting to tell them how much I enjoyed their books.
Seventh Step: Re-wrap all of the books including the new ones, repack the books (I brought an extra large suitcase to get the rest of my books home…hahaha), and drive home safely.
Final Step: Unpack and unwrap your books in alphabetical order by author (this is because I organize my shelves by author). Then, find room on your shelves for all of your new purchases…it is always an experience…haha.
I came away with 136 books total (86 books from home, 40 pre-orders, and 10 books I bought from the author’s tables). I doubt I will ever go this hard at a signing again because it was a little stressful, but it was oh so fun! It also probably won’t happen again because I was driving for this one, but we will see!
If you want to see what exactly I got and what my spreadsheet looks like, then here you go (I obviously was not going to type out every book that I got signed considering there were 136 of them):
Sadly, Katy Evans was not able to attend and I was really looking forward to seeing her. I kept her on my list because her books still made the trip since she pulled out at the last minute. I completely understand why she couldn’t make it though. Hopefully, I will be able to see her at another signing in the future!
I hope you guys enjoyed this post. Let me know if you want me to do something like this for every signing that I go to because I would be more than happy to do it! I just like getting feedback because sometimes I feel like I am talking to myself on here (insert crying laughing emoji)!
Have a good weekend bookworms!