"Open Mic" sessions or gatherings.

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wandavoy
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"Open Mic" sessions or gatherings.

Post by wandavoy » 29 Aug 2016, 10:46

What do you think about "open mic" gatherings to help promote your work?
One local "open mic" mostly attracts poets, but allows and encourages other works of written art.
I was thinking of reading the prologue to my book.

This is different than a book reading at a book story or library. The people are there just to hear you.
At something like this, the written art is a surprise.

What do you think?

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DATo
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Post by DATo » 30 Aug 2016, 03:53

I think it is a good idea but it has already been in practice for a long time. It is not unusual for a writer to give a "reading". Though I agree that this is usually best suited to poems I don't see why part of a short story or novel could not be recited to whet the interest of an audience to one's work. Visiting authors often give such readings at bookstores or libraries at which they appear.

Ideally, as you might expect, one would choose a section of the work which is best suited to attracting the appreciation of the listener. Rather than an entire prologue I might present specific sections of a paragraph or two in length which in the author's opinion display elements which might capture the listener's interest and captivate the listener to the extent that they want to learn more. I would add to the reading a general idea of the plot of the book, story or collection of stories.

Now what is left to be determined is what kind of venue would be necessary to display this open mic presentation. Back in the 70's in the U.S.A. there were many coffee shops which drew, shall we say, a more "intellectual" clientele and patronage. Such shops would be busy in the evenings and it was common for patrons to read essays, poems and bits of stories they had written. I patronized several of these coffee shops back in my late teens and 20's but in time they went the way of the dodo bird.

My niece clued me to one which I attended with her about ten years ago but the open mic was more about music than literature. Small groups of two or three people (some of them very good) would play their instruments and/or sing and then hawk their CDs. The place was very modest as were many of the old coffee shops in the old days and I'm sure the owner was attempting to reprise that kind of atmosphere. There was a modest cover charge and the place sold soft drinks, coffee, tea and home made soups. It was cozy and brought back a lot of memories. I would think that under the right circumstances one might be able to pursue such an entrepreneurial venture but it would have to be for the love of it because I don't think you'd make much money hosting such a venue.
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Post by wandavoy » 30 Aug 2016, 09:18

Thank you for the insights and suggestions, DATo.
In Orlando, we have a few places that lend themselves to "open mic" nights that are more poetry and other spoken word art (but mostly poetry).
The one tonight is at Dandelion Cafe Communitea (a warm restaurant/coffee and tea house serving vegetarian food). This is only for spoken word and they have music other nights.
I was thinking along your lines, kind of. There are three poems in the ebook. I was thinking (and am still thinking) about introducing the story with a couple of lines from the prologue and then reading the first poem and maybe the second one. I'm not a great poet, but i figured this plan would fit the venue.

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Post by karolinka » 25 Oct 2016, 13:55

In my opinion, these gathering attract a certain crowd. The books that lend themselves to this kind of a scene would be poetry, chapbook collection, short stories, anything artsy. These could sell. I probably wouldn't try to advertise non-fiction this way, not sure if it it the right venue.
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Post by Lincoln » 21 Mar 2017, 10:21

wandavoy wrote:What do you think about "open mic" gatherings to help promote your work?
One local "open mic" mostly attracts poets, but allows and encourages other works of written art.
I was thinking of reading the prologue to my book.

This is different than a book reading at a book story or library. The people are there just to hear you.
At something like this, the written art is a surprise.

What do you think?
I would love to do something like this but I wouldn't even know where to start. Does sound like a cool idea, though!
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Post by GKerr » 30 May 2018, 10:11

Over the course of the last 12 weeks I have been working on a module for my university designed to encourage me to engage more with the publishing industry. Within this module we had a guest speaker, SJ Bradley who is a literary activist and runs events which allow people to read their own work alongside published authors and scheduled speakers. This event is called Fictions of Every Kind and is based in Leeds in the UK.

When she first told us about the event I thought that it was a brilliant idea and it was encouraging to hear that writers in my area are being encouraged to share their work. I have attended open mic's regularly in the past and I think they foster communities in a positive way.

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