Writer's Block Bookstore has established strong partnerships in our community, which have become an integral part of our events and programming. We frequently host in-store book fairs and special events with libraries and schools throughout the Orlando area.
Partnerships are essential, even for online events. Whenever possible, we team up with an organization where the topic and theme align with their mission and member/client base, so that we can host the event jointly and expand the event’s exposure within the community. We have a partnership with the local PBS station where we sponsored a print run of 2000 PBS workbooks that will be going out in the fall to families and schools.
We will reach out to all of our groups such as parent groups, storytime, and after-school programs. We will make the author’s book the featured book in our book of the month club, Marketing for the online event is the same as any live event that we host. We reach out to the newspaper and other media outlets In addition to our social media channels, we send out press releases to our well-curated media list and follow-up with targeted outlets, if applicable. We send out digital newsletters to over 4000 subscribers and pre-sale and promote all our events on our website.
We have relationships with the two private preparatory schools, Lake Highland Preparatory School (www.lhps.org) where we are their bookseller. We are also the bookseller for Trinity Preparatory School (www.trinityprep.org) where we have partnered for their annual book festival held in February each year. Each school has beautiful auditoriums that hold over 700 people. We also work with Winter Park High School where we are able to host events for more than 1000 people. We have a form that we send out to all the media specialists in the surrounding Orlando area asking them to express interest in online events. A copy of our questionnaire can be found at: https://forms.gle/SqqDS1NWPBokYFH
The partnership we have with the Orange County Library System (OCLS) and OCPS has provided us the opportunity to put on great events and school visits. The OCLS has more than 420,000 active cardholders, a total door count ranging from 270,000 to 300,000, and a monthly circulation of about 1 million. and provides library services to 1.1 million Orange County residents via 17 locations and their online services. Orange County Library Systems has a comprehensive marketing and social media program. They promote in both print and online. The library sends out a monthly newsletter to its subscribers and friends of the library. Events are promoted in the monthly magazine with a circulation of 10,000, posters, bookmarks, targeted electronic newsletters, the website, and social media channels. The library sends out press releases and gets a great deal of coverage in the Orlando Weekly and other local print and digital media outlets.
With 290,000 square feet, the Orlando Public Library is one of the largest public library buildings in the State of Florida. The Library’s door count is an approximate average of 50,000. It has a spacious stage area that can accommodate 500 people and includes a state-of-the-art sound system. Successful events have been held with authors including Kate DiCamillo, Rainbow Rowell, David Levithan, Rick Yancy, and Avi. A separate area is available for book sales, meet and greets, and autographs.
Our authors are continuously amazed and thrilled by the fantastic turnout and pre-sales we do for schools. Recently, we hosted author James Ponti, who won the elementary Sunshine State Young Readers Award. James launched his newest book with Writer’s Block. The following is an excerpt from a Facebook post that touts the success of the event and the author's gratitude to the store.
“I want to thank everyone for making yesterday’s book birthday such a great day. Originally, the plan was to try to do three school visits (which is a lot) and an event at The Writer’s Block bookstore… Somehow the three visits became six … and it required librarians from the schools to be creative and flexible during the second week of school. The amazing staff at Writer’s Block Bookstore drove me from school to school and set up an incredible book store event.” -- James Ponti
Other authors who have had very successful author and school events include Russell Ginns, Lisa Graff, Margaret Mincks, Michelle Edwards, Ethan Long, Geoff Rodkey, Amy Christine Parker, Taryn Souders, and Neal Shusterman, to name a few! Our authors are continuously amazed and thrilled by the fantastic turnout and pre-sales we do for schools. We sold more than 200 copies of his latest book for the schools he visited and for the launch at our store, which was a standing room only. Other authors that have had very successful author and school events are, where James Ponti, and Lisa Graff, where we sold approx. 100 books, Margaret Mincks, where we sold over 75 books, Michelle Edwards, Kelly Barnhill, author of The Girl Who Drank the Moon, Ethan Long, Geoff Rodkey, Taryn Souders, Russell Ginns, and Neal Shusterman to name a few.
We hosted several very successful events, including Max Brailler for the release of Last Kids on Earth (108 sold); Ally Condi & Brendan Reichs for the release of The Beast ( 102 sold); Greg Van Eekout for the release of COG ( 69 sold); ticketed event for Jennifer Armentrout at the new store for the release of the Burning Shadow (60 sold); Abby Hanlon for the release of Dory Fantasmagory Tiny Tough (78 sold); Mike Lowery for the release of Everything Awesome About Dinosaurs (115 sold); Kate DiCamillo in December 2019