Terri Osburn headshot Image~ By Terri Osburn

Back in the day, I *might* have done a bit of partying. Kicked a keg once or twice. Woke up with some fuzzy memories about the night before. But I’ve since offered up my gall bladder in payment for that debauchery, and now I’m what you’d call a teetotaler. One with tattoos who listens to loud music, but I’m toten’ the tee all the same.

However, I’ve recently started kicking up my heels at a new kind of party. And with no commute necessary, you can drink all you want so long as you don’t spill an adult beverage in your keyboard.

I’m talking about Facebook parties.

If you’re an author with a book to promote and you haven’t tried this, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. I’ll explain for the uninitiated.

Facebook provides the opportunity to hold events. To set one up and participate in an event, you must use your profile, not your page. (If you don’t know the difference, ask in the comments and I’ll explain.) Setting up an event is relatively painless (thank goodness.) Then on the day of your event, the wall of the event page becomes the setting for your party, and everything happens right there.

This is an event I held back on Valentine’s Day.

Once you a pick date and time, invite your writer friends to take a time slot (15 mins, 30 mins, 1 hr – totally up to you) to entertain the readers. They would post about their own work, offer up a prize, and engage with the readers in the comments.

Here’s why this works so well. You’re going to invite your fans. Writer friend is going to invite her fans. Writers A, B, C, and D are also going to invite their fans. And on the day of the event, all the fans will be gathered in one place, learning about everyone’s work. We’re talking about a virtual captive audience.

There’s a chance that Writer A’s fans haven’t heard of you. But they will now. And you’re going to be so witty and charming in the comments that they’ll be ordering your books, falling in love with them, and telling all their friends about them within days or weeks.

See where I’m going with this?

For the cost of one afternoon or evening of your time, you’re finding new readers, helping your writer friends reach new readers, and introducing your fans to other awesome reads, something for which they will be forever grateful.

All of this makes the Facebook party the ultimate win-win-win situation. Also, they’re fun. Especially when the man candy pics start flying around. And free! Other than the cost of the prizes, which you’d spend anyway doing a blog tour and be lucky if you reached twenty or thirty readers.

With a Facebook party, you can reach hundreds of readers in a matter of hours. All while sipping a beverage and wearing your pajamas.

But there is one warning. If you are not a participating author, do not show up in a Facebook party and start promoting your work. This is equivalent to crashing your neighbor’s party and drinking all their wine. You don’t want to be that neighbor. Or that author.

Has anyone tried one of these parties? Got any tips to make it run smoother or be more successful? Anyone found something similar that works just as well?

Although born in the Ohio Valley, Terri Osburn found her true home between the covers of her favorite books. Classics like The Wizard of Oz and Little Women filled her childhood, and the genre of romance beckoned during her teen years. In 2007, she decided to put pen to paper and write her own. Just five years later, she was named a 2012 finalist for the Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® Award. The author of the Anchor Island contemporary romance series, you can learn more about this author and her work by visiting her website at www.terriosburn.com.