Monday, February 24, 2020

What to expect from an author visit--mine, anyway (Brenda Hiatt)

As an author of teen fiction, I’m always more than happy to meet with my readers and potential readers, as well as aspiring writers. Over the years, I’ve done meet-and-greet events, structured talks for classrooms, libraries and civic groups, multi-author panels, book club visits and more—and they’ve all been great fun. If you’re a teacher, librarian, bookseller or book club organizer who’s never had an author visit your group or classroom, you may want to know what you can expect.

Like most authors, what I bring to a presentation, visit or appearance varies depending on who the audience is and what I’ve been asked to do. For libraries, I often talk about my path to becoming an author and leave plenty of time for questions. For groups that are already fans of my work, such as some book clubs, I’ll focus more on the specific book or series they’re reading and delve more deeply into the characters, plot points and what the story means to me—and to them. Schools are more likely to want something geared toward the aspiring writers in a class, so I’ll discuss things like the actual writing process, editing, getting a book from idea to print, etc. 

I’ve been in the writing biz for a long time. My first novel was published in 1992 and I’ve been a working writer continuously since then, publishing both traditionally and independently. I also conducted online writing workshops and classes for twenty years. That means I can speak to almost any aspect of writing or the business of writing/publishing that your group or class might be interested in. One thing I’ve found readers of all sorts tend to be curious about is where my ideas come from—in particular the idea behind my popular Starstruck series. It’s a fun story that I never get tired of telling!

Because travel cuts so deeply into my writing schedule, these days I mostly prefer to keep my in-person visits close to home (now central Florida) or locations that I’ll be visiting already for other reasons, such as a research trip or a writing conference. However, I very much enjoy Skype or other video-conferencing appearances, which have become both more popular and much easier in recent years. If you’re a teacher, librarian, book club leader or other event organizer interested in arranging an author visit, please don’t hesitate to contact me at I’d love to spend an hour or two with you and your group!  

Learn more about Brenda Hiatt at

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