Today I went to my first ever author signing and met the wonderful V.E. Schwab in Glasgow. She is currently touring the UK to promote her new book This Savage Song the first book in the Monsters of Verity series.
So, I went along to the Glasgow signing with Lauren (FictionTea) and Shauni (MyNovelExperience) from Bookstagram. I was so nervous about meeting Victoria and when we were waiting in the queue my heart was racing. Luckily I had absolutely nothing to worry about, the next time I meet an author I will hopefully be calmer.
The signing was at midday and so it wasn’t very busy as the majority of people work during the day and can’t leave work for a signing. We didn’t have to wait very long to meet Victoria and she was even lovelier than I could have imagined. She signed my copies of A Darker Shade of Magic and This Savage Song, and even signed my sister’s copy of Viscious and personalised it despite my sister not being there.
I honestly can hardly remember what we talked about as I was so nervous it’s all now a blur. I somehow ended up telling her that I had finished the first draft of my book and she was so nice and motivational about it. Her lovely publicist (who’s name I don’t know) took pictures of us together and it was just such a lovely experience. They were both so welcoming and kind.
After me, Lauren and Shauni had our books signed and our pictures taken we moved over to the side and ended up chatting to some other girls who were there. It turned out that one of them was Ania (FallingForBooks) whom I’ve been chatting to on Bookstagram for over a year! So that was a lovely surprise.
Victoria got through the signing really quickly as it wasn’t very busy (because of the time) and so we hung around to see if we could go back over and speak to her. When we did go back over, Victoria and her publicist were lovely and got us all to bring over chairs and invited us to have a cakes with her that a reader had kindly made.
Around eight of us ended up sitting chatting with Victoria for over an hour about books and writing, it was amazing. I couldn’t believe it was actually happening, especially since the signing had been free! It was so eye-opening having the opportunity to sit down with an author and really get to know her and ask about her writing.
I didn’t take notes whilst she spoke (although I weirdly wanted to) but here are some of the tips I can remember her giving:
- Give yourself a schedule and set aside a chunk of time each day or week to write. Don’t just hope that you will one day find the time, you need to make the time.
- When planning a book, plan around 10 key scenes or moments that you can’t wait to write. This will keep you motivated and gives you something to write if you ever get hit with writer’s block.
- She explained her sticker chart which she uses to keep track of how much she is writing, reading, travelling and exercising each month. Here is a link to a post where she explains it!
- The ending is important and she explained that she always likes to know what the ending of the book will be before she starts writing. Even if she changes it later, she likes to write knowing what she is working towards.
- To deal with writer’s block, Victoria said she likes to think how could I make this situation worse? or she tries to think of multiple possible outcomes for a situation and then picks her favourite.
- Finally, Victoria recommended writing with a pen and paper rather than on a computer when you get stuck. Your brain works differently when you write freehand and so it can help get the ideas flowing again.
I came away from the signing so motivated to get back into writing again. I also realised just how much I had put published authors up on a pedestal, chatting with Victoria and actually having a back and forth conversation made me realise just how normal and approachable authors are (that probably sounds silly now).
I had an amazing time meeting V.E. Schwab and I will be keeping my eye out for her or any other authors coming to Glasgow in the near future. I definitely recommend going to author signings and meeting V.E. Schwab (espeically if you can turn it into a tea party!)
Thanks for reading!