Behind the Scenes at InBetween

When the TWG spread its wings and visited Kaohsiung recently, we had the pleasure of meeting the organisers at InBetween International and participating in two events inspired by our anthology, Night Market. The TWG gave presentations on their writing journeys, and artists, musicians and providers of natural foods and beauty products joined ranks to create wonderful, cultural evenings. In our downtime we also had plenty of fun exploring Taipei’s foremost southern city.

First stop was – naturally – a night market. Liuhe Night Market provided a quick dinner before that evening’s event. 20151121_18253120151121_18290120151121_18365520151121_184628

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Next we had a great time at the cultural night market organised by InBetween, giving presentations, selling books and making new Kaohsiung friends.

 

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We were also delighted to meet a reader who had asked for both anthologies to be posted to him when they were published earlier in the year. I found out later he also kindly blogged about the InBetween events.

 

After a long day and exciting evening, it was time to wind down with Kaohsiung friends. 12238070_10207118896642968_1734641540323636407_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The following day was spent at Pier 21, a vibrant cultural centre, and taking touristy photos. 12265921_10207118902123105_6122546492772647310_o 12239254_10207118900603067_9097948950577054155_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Yet more was in store for the TWG in the evening of the second day, when we met some writers interested in setting up their own group, and we were able to share our experiences.

Thanks to our gracious hosts, In Between International, the TWG’s first venture beyond Taipei was a blast and a resounding success.

 

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Upcoming Antics

Here’s an update on the shenanigans the Taipei Writers Group have planned for autumn 2015.

Events – Please Join Us!

READINGS
October 17th 6.30 p.m.- Taipei Writers Group is coming to Red Room
“The Red Room is an ever-expanding community, exploring and extending the boundaries between audience and performer; a not-for-profit platform for events developing a culture of learning to listen to each other, what is around us, and our selves.”

TWG GOES SOUTH
November 21st and 22nd  – Taipei Writers Group is at InBetween International, Kaohsiung.
InBetween International is a creative center that connects Taiwan and the world through engaging people in a cross-cultural platform. 

Writers Writing

IN THE MEDIA
Appearing in the November edition of Centered on Taipei, an article by our very own C.K. Hugo Chung about the Taipei Writers Group, what it does and what the group offers its members.

BRIAN QUENTIN WEBB is hard at work on the final third of his novel, Shift, killing baddies and beloved characters left and right.

TWG ANTHOLOGY III

Taipei Writers Group members are working on the group’s third anthology, which comes out soon after Christmas. Each story is set in the same futuristic, dystopian world, where global warming has caused Peak Heat, a time when modern civilisation collapses. The anthology includes stories set in Canada, Sumatra, Taiwan and several areas of the United States.
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Author of Deadman Bay and The Jade Lady, Patrick Wayland is currently working on a spy thriller set in Silicon Valley.

 

 

 

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Bradley Verdell’s revised editions of The Adventures of Chadwick Yates Books 1 and 2 will soon be available FREE on Kindle, in preparation for upcoming new releases in the series.

Currently in editing is Verdell’s new gunpowder fantasy, tentatively titled The Fourth Warlock. This novel brings together the Victorian Era, demons, and The Three Musketeers.

 

41oRQWkk2QL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_ In 2015, Jenny Green published There Comes a Time, Death Switch and Dawn Falcon.

She has nearly completed the first book in her scifi series, Space Detective: Mission Improbable, which hits the virtual bookstores December 16th. 

 

 

 

 

To sign up to the TWG Anthologies Club and hear about special offers and beta reading opportunities, click on this link.

Night Market – Our Second Anthology is Released!

Back in February, we celebrated the creation of our first anthology, Taiwan Tales. To revisit  our amazement and celebration at the completion of our vision, refer back to this blog post.

Members have been jokingly referring to our books as “having babies”. Having had two babies, I think there is definitely similarity in the way we forget the pain and joyfully suggest, “Let’s make another!” And make another, we did.

From the creation and first edits of the stories to the artwork, the blurb, and the layout of the e-book and print versions, many members of Taipei Writers’ Group have given their very best skills and expertise to make Night Market a production that the group is proud of. Having moved back to New Zealand in December 2014, I was probably the writer least involved in the production process, and I am indebted to the dedicated souls that worked on the editing and production for weeks and weeks. For me, the wonderful thing about this anthology is, it gave a number of group members a chance to participate and utilize skills beyond writing.

Let’s look at the cover:

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All of the artwork was done by the talented Hannah Charlton. She is a member of our group, and listed in the author section of this blog. Each Chinese sign is a title of a story in the anthology.  If you read Chinese, see if you can match them up! Post your attempts in the comments, and we will eventually tell you whether you guessed correctly. There is a beautiful black and white image to accompany each story, which you can see in the e-book and the print version.

And how about the Amazon blurb:

You can find anything in the night market…

Text messages from beyond the grave. Love potions and hidden secrets. Answers to questions that haunt our memories or discoveries that may change the direction of our lives.

Tales of love and loss, of life and death.

From local and expat authors living in Taiwan comes a multi-genre anthology of short stories as piquant and varied as the food found in the island’s famous night markets.

Who could resist that invitation to partake in a night market feast?

Another extension to our publishing experience has been the book launch parties. One is being prepared as I type, and I am feeling my distance, on the other side of the earth. But, just like our characters on that Night Market cover, the words in the book ensure our group stays together.

So, shall we make another?

Of course!

How to Organise a Book Launch Party

Taipei Writers’ Group recently launched the paperback of Taiwan Tales, along with a preview of the forthcoming Night Market, and I thought I would share some book launch ideas, tips and advice based on our experience.

Taipei Writers Group launching Taiwan Tales and Night Market

Taiwan Tales and Night Market book launch party

Venue

A good venue for a book launch is:

  • Central in your city/region and easily accessible by car and public transport
  • Large enough to accommodate the expected attendance, but not too large – if your turnout is smaller than expected, the place will seem uncomfortably empty
  • Two-roomed if possible. People need a place to step out of the hubbub, and a separate room for drinks and snacks helps keep noisy conversations separate from the main action
  • Bare-walled, so you can add your own posters and displays
  • Comfortable and well-appointed. Toilets for your guests are a must, but are there also seats, rugs, floor cushions for people who want to rest their feet? Are there tables for food, a sink, a refrigerator?
  • Accessible to the disabled

C.K. Hugo Chung had the use of a great venue for the Taiwan Tales and Night Market launch. Based in central Taipei, ColorWolfStudio is an international artists’ cooperative, and Hugo made our book launch part of the group’s monthly zapper. With a covered outdoor area and two rooms the TWG was easily able to be good hosts to the attendees. A small drawback was that the studio was at the top of a building and so a little difficult for one group member to get to due to his disability.

Displays

Displays are the first things your guests will see as they arrive. Copies of your book, banners, posters, bookmarks and other book-related promotional materials and paraphernalia can all be displayed, and if your book’s cover contains distinctive colours, you can echo them with cloths or flower displays around the room. Another option is to project an image of the book cover on a wall or screen for guests to see as they arrive.

Night Market poster

Night Market poster

We were very lucky to have two gorgeous posters of Night Market, designed by Hannah Charlton, and Hugo made sure Taiwan Tales copies were beautifully set off by a red cloth.

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Taiwan Tales display

Taiwan Tales display

Schedule of Events

While it’s tempting to be relaxed and laid back and imagine everything will gel on the night, a safer approach is to plan a schedule of events. Your audience needs to know what they can expect, and it’s easy to forget where people should be and what they should be doing in the nervous excitement during the launch.

Some ideas for events include:

  • A presentation on the process behind creating the book, such as images, places, events or experiences that inspired, and the steps taken to reach publication.
  • Short readings from the book or works that were significant in its creation
  • Question and answer sessions
  • Networking time. You need to give your guests time to mingle and discuss how awesome your book is!

Writers are often introverted types, but the TWG Taiwan Tales and Night Market book launch was cosy and friendly, and the writers enjoyed sharing their work with the audience.

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Wrapping Up

As your book launch draws to a close, don’t forget to play the good host until the last guest is out the door. Each person you invited is a link to many others who may hear about how great your book launch was and how they must buy your book.

We had many interesting conversations with guests as they were leaving, especially with the more inebriated ones. Everyone seemed to have had a great time, and we sold plenty of books.

What’s been your experience of book launches? Have you any tips to pass on?