The Book Tea


The Book Tea is an intimate and unique marketing idea.  Invite your friends and supporters to a book tea held in a friend’s house.  Ellen Herbert, a writing friend, has done just that.  Her book sales have skyrocketed and she is doing well with book sales through bookstores and online.  Read what she says.

“Falling Women and Other Stories”  Ellen Herbert


“I started reading and writing short stories in the mid ‘80s when my son was little, and my time limited. Eventually I took a short fiction workshop at the Writer’s Center, Bethesda, and then applied to an MFA program. During those busy years, I wrote at a steady pace and sent out stories. One day I got a call from, the fiction editor of First for Women, who wanted to BUY one of my stories! Later in the ‘90s, a great decade for short stories, I had three stories accepted in one day, one with NPR!

Through the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Competition, I heard about Shelfstealers Publishers and sent them my story collection. Sheryl Dunn liked my stories and managed to edit and order them in a cohesive fashion. I am proud of the work we did together to make Falling Women and Other Stories, published in February 2012.

The difficulty these days is getting the word out about one’s publication. Recently, I began to receive invitations to book teas, held in private homes, where the featured guest is the actual book. One of my friends offered to give one for me. My book tea was held on a recent Saturday afternoon. We had savory as well as sweet snacks and a variety of beverages.

My guest list focused on those who had supported my literary pursuits through the years. More than fifty people attended. The tea lasted for two hours. About an hour in, I read from Falling Women and took questions. I did a book signing and sold out of books. It was a warm and intimate experience and the home environment added to this.

The idea behind a book tea is to start some buzz about the book. Since the book tea, I’ve heard from the owner of the bookstore, ‘One More Page’, who wants me to read there!  The book tea acted like a springboard for publicity and networking.”

Thank you Ellen.   If any of you are interested in launching your own book tea, I suggest placing an article or comment in the local newspaper afterwards to educate readers and foster the networking possibilities.  Offer this for your literary friends who need to expand their promoting potential.

There are no rules as you could have a book coffee too.   Be creative.  Just do it.




Write a 100 words or more using the following words:

tea, cream, paint, hat, broken, shout


Post it on my site as a comment.




Kaye LindenThe Book Tea

3 Comments on “The Book Tea”

  1. ellen herbert

    Hi Kaye,
    Thanks for writing about my book tea.
    I think the reason these are becoming popular is that bookstores are growing scarce, which is too bad. I still like to wander around a bookstore and find a new book perhaps by an author I’ve never heard of.

  2. Irene Zibin

    “Well, did you have a nice cup of tea?” I heard my father shout at the operator through the telephone receiver. He was drunk and upset by a broken connection.
    I picked at the turquoise paint on the doorway and exchanged knowing smirks with my friend Doreen. After he slammed down the receiver my father took a big swig from his mickey of rye, then plopped down on a white vinyl kitchen chair and crushed his new black cowboy hat. Doreen and I burst out laughing, and when my father pulled Doreen onto his lap she dumped a can of cream right over his head.

  3. Kaye Linden

    I agree Ellen. There is nothing like walking around a bookstore and absorbing the colors and smells of new books. Delicious.

    Thank you for your mini fiction. I enjoyed the concrete detail “crushed his new black cowboy hat.” Nice job on capturing a neat visualization from the prompts.

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