The next installment of the Hottest Book Series Ever is coming out, and you're lining up at your local bookstore to wait with a legion of super fans, reservation tickets in hand. Some folks are even in costumes or steampunk gear, and it's totally great. You're among your people.
But sometimes, we get too comfortable too easily, and we lose sight of the fact that although we're all brought together by this thing we all love, everyone loves things in their own, personal way. That said, here's a brief checklist outlining what you need to keep in mind so you can be an awesome book release party attendee:
1. Follow the bookstore's instructions: This should go without saying, but for Pete's sake, do what the bookstore staff tells you to. You should also be super duper extra considerate if the store is in a mall, which means they're having an event in a shopping area with a bunch of other stores that are counting on their usual traffic (or in the case of midnight book release parties, are shut down altogether while the book store does business).
Don't give that mall a reason to shut down events at that store. By the same token, if it's a local neighborhood shop, don't give the neighbors a reason to complain about the noise if the party is late in the evening. Everyone's there to have a good time, and we shouldn't make our fun someone else's nightmare.
2. Pal around with people at the event: Book releases are fun because the folks in line with you are probably die-hards, buzzing with excitement about diving into the world of Hottest Book Series Ever, Book 5. Make some friends!
Talk about the series, other books by the author, or even similar works by different creators. You've got a golden opportunity to meet your bookish soul mate and/or discover new reads via like-minded fans at the event.
3. That said, avoid talking about spoilers in line: If you're the type to look up spoilers before a thing is released, and it's cool if you're into that, remember that you're probably in the minority. Don't spoil the fun for folks around you. I know, I know - you're probably super excited that your ship is going to be realized, but seriously. Keep it to yourself.
4. While we're at it: don't spoil things after you get your book, either: I've seen it happen before. Folks get their copy of the new book, plop down somewhere in the store or nearby to read it straight away, and then discuss spoilers right there. Don't be that person.
And it can get even worse than that if the author is attending the party, which means fans are reading the book while in line (so far still doing OK). But disaster lurks ahead. A fan might get to the front of the line and start talking to/asking questions of the author that possibly would spoil things for the other people waiting nearby.
Please. Don't be that person. Oh, and that ship you were dreaming about? Resist the urge to howl and scream if it goes the way of the Titanic.
5. Since we mentioned authors...: If the author is at the event, show some love! You (and everyone around you) are at this party to celebrate the work of this person, so give 'em a high five or buy 'em a coffee or something. They deserve it. Everyone there is tired. The author is tired, everyone waiting in line is tired, and the folks at the book store are tired. The best advice I can give you in this brief section is to only have the author sign what you bought that night (though it's usually OK to bring a book or two from home), give them some choice words of praise and a high-five, take your picture if the event allows, and move on.
Go forth, and venture into book release parties armed with this knowledge and be awesome about it!
(Top image credit: flickr)