This weekend I flew to Salt Lake City to surprise my friend Nish Weiseth, founder and editor of Deeper Story, to celebrate the release of her book Speak: How Your Story Can Change the World. Nish’s husband planned the surprise party with a ruse about stopping on the way to dinner, and it was such fun to see the surprise and happiness on Nish’s face to see friends and family gathered to toast her success. My only portion of the weekend was showing up, but I have thrown a few book release parties and gotten some emails about it, so here are some thoughts on this particular type of soiree.
Any excuse to throw a party, right? That’s my philosophy anyway. Writing on the internet has lucked me into friendships with other writers, and I love to hostess, so in the last few years I’ve thrown several parties for friends debuting their first books. The first was in Oklahoma City, for Megan Tietz and her book Spirit-Led Parenting. Next in my backyard in Los Angeles, for Nora Zelavansky and her novel Semi-Charmed Life. And then again in LA, at Coffee + Food, for Sarah Bessey and Jesus Feminist.
I've found that these shindigs are sort of like baby showers. Only without the gifts. Or diaper games. Actually, maybe they're not all that alike, it's just that my friends have all started writing books instead of having babies. Regardless, these things apply to any party that might be a combination of celebration and promotional, such as the launching of a new business. It's different than just your average event.
Each party has had its own flair, but there have been several things consistent. Here are a few to think about: