Easy as Pie Book Launch

Easy as Pie Book Launch

Posted on March 29 by Elinor Florence
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I’m a big believer in themed book launches.

The extra interest provided by themed displays, costumes, food, and music appeals to people who might not come out to just another author reading.

The Invermere Public Library here in my tiny community of 3,000 people hosted the pioneer-themed launch of my new novel Wildwood. The book is contemporary, about a single mother who inherits an abandoned farmhouse in northern Alberta, on condition that she lives there off-the-grid for one year. However, she is inspired by the journal she finds in the house belonging to her great-aunt, the original homesteader.

In keeping with the pioneer theme, Wildwood was launched at a historic log home that was renovated and turned into an arts centre. It really was the perfect venue, since my heroine inherits a beautiful old farmhouse built in 1924.

In Wildwood, Molly must teach herself to cook on a wood stove, using an ancient copy of the Five Roses Cook Book that she finds in the house. Pie is symbolic in my book – at first, Molly bakes a rhubarb pie that is a complete failure, but soon she grows in skill and confidence, and by the end of the book she is turning out perfect pies.

So my book launch also featured a Blue Ribbon Pie Contest! I was a tad nervous that nobody would enter the contest, but twenty people brought their best homemade pies of all flavours. The winning pie was a Strawberry Rhubarb pie. Of course I didn’t sample all twenty pies, but my favourite was a Sour Cream and Raisin.

Altogether there were eighty people at the event. I gave a 30-minute talk about the inspiration behind my novel, followed by the presentation of the pie contest award. My daughter made the first prize with her own clever hands, an embroidered hoop that said “Sweet as Pie.” Then the library ladies cut up and distributed all the delicious pies. Eighty people and twenty pies – you do the math!

The library ladies had also decorated for the event. The tables were covered with my own collection of vintage tablecloths, and they had borrowed pioneer items from the local museum for an interesting display that included an old butter churn, a sewing basket, baking implements, and photographs.

Finally, I was especially pleased that so many people wore pioneer-themed outfits. The library ladies dressed to the hilt, and one of them named Virginia Walker sewed a long skirt, matching apron and sunbonnet for both herself and her mother! (Even if you are the only one who dresses up, people will love it and want to take your photograph.)


When planning your own book launch, consider asking your friends to help you come up with food and decorating ideas for a very memorable event.

Elinor Florence

Posted by Kendra on December 6, 2014
Elinor Florence photo

Elinor Florence

Elinor Florence is an author and journalist. Before publishing her bestselling novel, Bird’s Eye View, she edited several daily newspapers and wrote for many publications, including Reader’s Digest Canada. Elinor lives in Invermere, British Columbia.