Once upon a time, publisher event grids (the method by which publishers announce projected author tours and solicit proposals for stops along the way) were all handled via spreadsheets and, as a result, the world was a dark and dreadful place. Nowadays, many publishers are posting their event grids in Edelweiss, where bookstores, libraries, and other worthy venues can request touring authors while seeing relevant title information and more. Publishers can then see those requests right in Edelweiss, sales reps can post comments and advocate for their accounts, etc. It makes the process a much richer experience for all involved.
Event Grid access and visibility is completely controlled by the publishers. If you aren’t associated with a store that often hosts touring authors, you may not have access to any grids. So, (un)fortunately, an individual won’t be able to use publisher event grids to request “an intimate evening” with their favorite hot author. This is about book sales, after all. If you don’t see event grids and you would like to, you will need to contact the publishers directly, either via your sales reps or by using the “Contact Us” links on publisher websites.
You can find full instructions for submitting Event Grids here, and you can find the Event Grids page in Edelweiss under your Publicity Tab:
When making a request for an author, you’ll see two fields: the General Event Profile field and the Request for the Title field. The General Event Profile is where you “sell” your venue by explaining your community, your customer base, facilities, past successes, specialties, etc. As a general rule of thumb, you shouldn’t count on the publicist knowing who you are or how awesome your store is. Be thorough. This is something you write once, as the profile will “stick” for all requests. It’s also wise to keep your profile text somewhere else, such as in a Word document. There have been instances where someone inadvertently deleted their profile and had to recreate it. To update or edit your General Event Profile, simply change what you need to change before submitting a grid.
The Request for the Title field is where you state your plans for a specific title and author event. If you have more than one location, be sure to explain which location you’re considering for that particular event and why. Is this the sort of event that would benefit from a 10-year-old bagpiper playing a selection of show tunes? If so, this is where you’d mention that inspired idea. If the author’s fans would overwhelm your store and you’re thinking that an offsite venue makes more sense, mention that here, too, along with the seating capacity of the proposed venue and any other relevant information. Thinking of a pajama party? It’s probably best to mention that here. You wouldn’t want the author to show up in their Wranglers and corduroy sport coat when everyone else is wearing flannel footies. How embarrassing!
Remember, if you click the Submit button a little too early and need to go back to edit your requests, you can simply “Un-submit” and the grid will again allow editing.
If you have questions, contact us at email@example.com.