Lifestyle

How I Threw My First Book Launch Party

This past weekend I celebrated the release of my debut novel Dilemmas Of a Damsel (get your copy here), by hosting a Dilemmas, Damsels, and Drinks cocktail party. I’m happy to say that after much planning and preparation, my first book launch party was a success!

Coming into this, I didn’t really know what to expect. All I was clear on was that I wanted my party to be reflective of my novel, but also my brand. I spent a lot of time working on this project (and launching this website), so to be able to celebrate with my family and friends felt great.


I’m new to all of this, so it was definitely a learning experience. But being that it was my first event, I think things went very well. Here’s how I planned my first book launch party…

1. Set the Budget

Since this is indeed my first release and that I’m self-published, I don’t have publishers knocking on my door (yet…). So I knew going in that I would have to fund this party 100% on my own, after all it’s an investment and I am confident that it will soon pay off.  I did some research and came up with an amount I was comfortable with spending and started from there.

2. Choose a Venue

Now I’ll admit – this part gave me anxiety! I found it a bit challenging to find a venue that would be accommodating, affordable and compliment my novel. Luckily for me – I have an amazing best friend that offered me her place to use. It was perfect! Not only because it was free, the layout and was everything I was looking for. The space intimate, welcoming, stylish, and the location complimented my novel’s storyline as well!

3. Pick a Theme

The book’s main character Jade is a go-getter, with great style that loves a good cocktail. I wanted to host a party that she herself would enjoy. Also, when I picture my readers, I picture them reading my work while enjoying a drink, and super comfortable in their element. In addition – who doesn’t love tasty cocktails and great conversation?!  I settled on a cocktail party theme with just a touch of glam. I truly feel that it captured the essence of my novel.

4. Set a Menu

Being that this was a cocktail party, I wanted to keep the menu light. I opted to serve easy to eat appetizers and snacks that my guests could eat while socializing. I was able to link up with an amazing caterer (Check out her website here), I’ve been to plenty of gatherings that had her food and knew that I wouldn’t be disappointed. For the bar, once again my AMAZING best friend came through! She’s a former bartender and knows her shit when it comes to making drinks. We decided to create cocktails that represented the novel’s main characters. It was a fun way to share the book with my guests and allow them to get to know my characters and their personalities a little better. As far as desserts, who doesn’t love a dessert table? I tried to keep things cute and in line with my theme. In doing so I was able to save some money with some DIY snacks like Rose’ and Moscato gummy bears, and vodka infused chocolate covered strawberries.

5. Entertainment/Social Media

I kept this pretty basic because I really wanted everyone to be comfortable and have a good time. I opted out of having a DJ/performer and settled on creating a playlist on Tidal. I chose songs that lightened the mood, and would be easy on the ears. As far as photography goes, I was able to hire a local photographer to capture all the highlights. I also ordered a sick backdrop that included my logo and website (can’t forget to market myself) and thought it would be fun to take photos with my guests. In addition to that, I wanted to make sure that I was able to market my book with guest participation, so I created a custom Snapchat filter and hashtag (#DilemmasDamselsandDrinks) that I encouraged my guests to use when sharing pictures.

6. Promote My Novel

My novel was the main attraction, so I made sure to have plenty of copies ready for purchase and on display. I thought it would be a nice touch to incorporate excerpts from the book and have them printed and placed on cocktail tables throughout the party. I felt and gave my guests a chance to get to know the characters and their stories.

All in all, I feel that my party was a great success. I’m so thankful to my sisters and girlfriends because they helped me so much along the way. I learned a lot throughout the process and I already have ideas for my next book launch party! Here are some more pictures from my event, I hope you guys like them! Be sure to grab a copy of my novel, I promise you won’t be disappointed!

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  • Reply
    Jessica
    August 31, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Awesome!!! I’m excited to see what your future will bring! I’m still waiting on my book from USPS…cannot wait to read it!

    -J. Massaquoi

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 1, 2017 at 6:02 pm

      Aww thank you so much!! Let me know when you get it! xoxo

  • Reply
    Dieter
    September 1, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    Nice one, congrats to your new novel

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 5, 2017 at 11:27 pm

      Thank you so much!

  • Reply
    Ingrid
    September 6, 2017 at 1:41 am

    Writing and publishing a book and even throwing a book launching party are all risks that you were willing to take. We cannot succeed unless we take risks. You’ve made those steps. I therefore wish you great success.

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:10 pm

      Hi Ingrid! Yes you are so right! 2017 was definitely all about risks! Hopefully they pay off but until then I’m just enjoying the process! Thank you for reading <3

  • Reply
    Mila
    September 19, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    Amazing! So professional! Congratulations 🖤

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:09 pm

      Thank you Mila!

  • Reply
    Alan
    September 19, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    Congratulations on the new book! Looks like a nice event.

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:09 pm

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Bryan Carey
    September 19, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    Good for you! Many of us in the blogger world talk about writing a book but few actually follow through. Good luck with everything!

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:09 pm

      Hi Bryan! Thank you so much!!

  • Reply
    Ana
    September 19, 2017 at 5:23 pm

    Congratulations Monique! I love the cocktail party theme and that outfit – you looked just stunning! Wishing you all the best <3

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:09 pm

      Hi Ana! Thank you so much! It was a lot of fun! I’m already thinking about the next book launch! xoxo

  • Reply
    Saint Facetious
    September 19, 2017 at 6:16 pm

    Sounds like you had a great plan. I did almost the exact same thing for my books, except swapping the playlist for a live musician or two (but as I am one, I can get that on the cheap). Anyway, big congratulations and hope it does well!

    • Reply
      Monique Elise
      September 22, 2017 at 5:08 pm

      Very nice! And thank you so much! Wish for plenty of success in your writing journey!

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