YA readers will have a chance to spend some quality virtual time with a handful of Little, Brown authors, who are taking turns in the spotlight during the publisher’s new Live at the Lounge series. Putting a fresh spin on YA publishers’ recent innovative tactics to use the Internet and social media to showcase authors, Little, Brown’s initiative is a six-part live video series that launched October 30 at 8:00 p.m. EDT with a live chat with Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, authors of the Beautiful Creatures series, whose fourth installment, Beautiful Redemption, is newly published.
The “live” aspect of the online programming enables readers to interact with the authors during their chats, through an online video option and via social media platforms. Participants can log on to the chat using a Twitter or Facebook account. During each event, viewers are given the choice to submit questions or comments to be discussed on camera or via text, and are able to simultaneously post to and invite friends from Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ from within the platform.
Fans interested in purchasing copies of the featured authors’ titles can access “buy” buttons located on the chat page during each author interview, which direct viewers to a variety of retail accounts. After each author session, chats will be archived and available for viewing on the LBYR Facebook page and on the Live at the Lounge Web site.
“The fact that readers can actually interact with authors in live time as part of a community, ask questions, and see how others are responding to the conversation, is what is exciting,” says Andrew Smith, v-p and deputy publisher of LBYR, of the initiative. “The YA community is obviously spending more and more time online, and with Live at the Lounge they can become part of an event that is happening live. There are many readers authors can’t reach via an actual live tour, and we’re hoping to use this as an additional way to help our authors connect with as many fans as possible. It provides us the opportunity to transport some of the biggest names in young adult fiction directly into viewers’ homes – and to let readers share that experience via social media platforms.”
Authors participating in upcoming Live at the Lounge events are Malinda Lo (Adaptation) on November 7; Laini Taylor (Days of Blood & Starlight) on November 13; Libba Bray (The Diviners) on December 11; Darren Shan (Zom-B) on January 29; and Gail Carriger (Etiquette & Espionage) on February 12.
“This was a great collaboration between our publicity, school and library, and digital marketing teams,” says Smith of the initiative. “We are featuring an amazing slate of authors and we’re excited to see what kind of response we get. We think this is a great, of the moment, way to launch a new book. We’re hoping this is just the beginning, and that Live at the Lounge will grow even bigger.”