Last Chance to Register! #TeaWithTheAuthor at #DeBaryHall

Hope those of you who live in area will consider joining me for this always-fun event! If you want to come, you must reserve your seat as soon as possible, no later than Monday morning, 12/4.

Here’s the scoop!

Recap: The $25 charge includes catered lunch, my custom-blended teas (named for characters in my books), a reading and Q&A session, and a signed copy (your choice) of one of my books.

Reservations should be made as soon as possible (no later than Monday morning), so we know how many lunches to order. Call Tracy at 386-668-3840 or email at and reserve yourย place today!

Can’t wait to see you then!

25 thoughts on “Last Chance to Register! #TeaWithTheAuthor at #DeBaryHall

    • DeBary Hall is an absolutely gorgeous place, with a lot of history behind it, and I’m so lucky that they have be as a frequent guest there. In 2018, I’m even starting a new series of presentations every other month on Florida’s Fabulous Wildlife. I’m excited about that, too. A tour of the mansion is well worth making time for. It’s lovely. And thanks for the well wishes! I’ll try to do a follow up post afterward. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    • Wouldn’t that be fun? I’d love to see your smiling face at one of the tables! I’ll try to do a follow up post afterward, to let you know how it went. I’ve done several of these, and always have a great time. And I think the guests do, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    • Me, too, Olga! Wouldn’t it be fun to have TWS friends from all over get together for a tea? ๐Ÿ˜€ We’d be quite an interesting and diverse group, I think1 ๐Ÿ˜€


    • I’d love to see you (and all of the folks here at TWS) at one of these things. Wouldn’t it be fun? ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for your well-wishes. I figure I can’t go wrong at one of these. Even if I go completely blank on a single thing to say, there’s FOOOOOD! Yummy tea sandwiches, and scones. And better yet, TEA! And nice folks at little tables covered with vintage tea pots and plates. I figure that’s a win, no matter what! RIght? ๐Ÿ˜€

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    • I was incredibly lucky, Tina. I got the idea for my 2nd book, Swamp Ghosts, while on an eco tour on the St. Johns River. I asked the lovely captain of the boat, the late Jeanne Bell, if she would talk to me about a story I had in mind, and she graciously took the time to answer a lot of questions on the tour business. She and her husband, wildlife photographer Doug Little, became the inspirations for Maggie & Gunn, my heroine and hero in the book, and Jeanne and Doug became good friends as well. They even started selling my book from their ticket booth, and Doug started taking 5 minutes on every tour to tell passengers all about the book they had inspired–Doug, hamming it up that he was the role model for my 35-year-old Viking of a hero. It is always an LOL moment. Then he introduced me to the folks at DeBary Hall, and they thought a talk on Florida wildlife would be a fun thing to do. I put together a PowerPoint presentation on just that, and combined it with a book signing at the end, and I was off and running.

      I now do talks for the Hall on various topics several times a year, and in 2018, I have 2 a month coming up. Along the way, Doug introduced me to the good folks at Enterprise Heritage Museum, and they invited me to visit with them, as well. It’s also one of my favorite places to do all kinds of fun talks. The teas evolved from that, and I do a couple a year at each place. AND, someone at almost every event comes up to me afterward to see if I’ll do a talk for their book club, or other private group. I’m talking to church groups, local AARP chapters, a chapter of the DAR, and various private book clubs.

      I credit Doug with starting the whole thing, and have met many wonderful & supportive folks through him. Not only has it been a great way to find new readers, but I enjoy each event SO much! I even do Meet the Author eco tours with Doug aboard the Naiad a couple times a year, too. (Those and the teas are my very favorites!) The museum events do press releases on upcoming talks, but I’ve not yet done any myself.

      At the same time this was happening, the owner of my favorite plant nursery read my first book, and asked if she could carry the books in her store. (She doesn’t even carry GARDENING books in her store, but she wanted to display mine). That was the start of another local endeavor that has succeeded beyond anything I expected, with Beverly ordering boxes of books at a time from me, and having her customers asking her regularly if she knows when the next one is coming out!

      I am convinced that finding ways to build a local readership is extremely important to authors, and every avenue should be explored to see what options are available in your area. Besides which, did I mention it’s FUN? ๐Ÿ˜€

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      • Wow, Marcia, you just wrote a great intro to a book on how to build local readership! Thanks for going into such detail. You’ve got me jazzed, and my mind is already exploring outside the box. If a nursery will sell novels, it’s not a stretch to consider asking a senior center. I’m starting a list, and on the next clear day, I’m going to walk through town with my books in hand. Thanks so much for the encouragement, my friend ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

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        • I’m so glad it inspired you to think about this, Tina. I’m a true believer in local readerships. One suggestion. You might consider starting with places you do business with already, so your face is familiar. I’d actually bought plants from Bev for years before I wrote my first book, though we only knew each other as customer and seller. But she asked me one day what I’d been up to, and I told her I’d just written a book. She expressed an interest in reading it, so i brought her a copy, which she loved, and it grew from there. (She asked ME if she could sell my books in her store, and I told her she was free to sell them all day long if she wanted to. ๐Ÿ˜€ ) So someone who knows you as a customer might be more open to reading a book, with an eye to perhaps carrying it in the store. And for some, being able to recommend a book means they need to be able to say they read it and liked it.

          Now places like senior centers sometimes have to have vendors of any sort approved, and/or might be prohibited from selling things for profit, so you’d have to explore that with them. And by the way, since my Florida books are set in a fictional town “just up the road a piece,” I can include the occasional mention of a real live person or business now and then. In my second Riverbend book, I had a character who loves to garden stop by DeBary Nursery and chat with Bev. (Bev was so thrilled when I surprised her with that scene). In my author’s notes, I let readers know that the DeBary Nursery is a real place, and that Bev would be happy to meet them, should they be in the area. A few days after that book came out, one of her regulars, who had become a reader of my series, stopped by to get BEV’S autograph! ๐Ÿ˜€

          So that’s another way to develop a good relationship with a local seller. We support each other. My Florida books were a natural for some of these places, but they also carry my mountain series, too, now that I’m working with them regularly.

          Good luck with whatever you try, and please keep us posted on how it goes. I’ll be glad to share what’s worked for me any time! ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

          Liked by 1 person

          • Thanks so much for all the advice, Marcia. It sounds like small independent businesses that I frequent would be the best place to start. We also have a women’s club in town that I’ve not joined, but it might be a good idea to do so, and network a little. It’s so kind of you to share all of this with me. I appreciate it very much. Hugs and Happy Holidays, my friend โค

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