Togather.com, a website which aims to bring authors and readers together, recently launched in beta. The idea is that fans will request an author’s presence at their bookstore or library group, and if they can get enough people committed to attending and purchasing the book, that the author will come. Authors create profiles to increase their discoverability and lay out their requirements for events.
What I really like about this idea is that it takes the old tour/publicity model and reverses it. Rather than book a tour for an author and then work tirelessly to fill the seats, Togather.com will fill the seats before you commit to an event. It will also give authors a better idea of where their readers are and encourage them to reach a new audience and visit different geographical areas.
The question is, will it work? Will readers take the time to promote an event and fill the seats for an author who hasn’t committed to coming yet? I can see it working well for the bigger names, but what about debut or midlist authors?
For the sake of literary events, I hope this new venture is a great success and encourages people to get out of the house and meet authors. But since it’s still in Beta, it’s too soon to tell.
Authors and readers, I would recommend signing up here so you can get in as one of the beta users. They’re currently taking submissions and will send out invitations shortly.