Authors will invariably do anything to help shift a few more copies of their books. Virgin Trains are offering authors the chance to do book signings on its West Coast route from September. Several authors have already signed up: Jo Nesbo, Joanna Trollope and comedian Ruby Wax.
“Most people nowadays read their book on the train so why not go to them, rather than always having them come to me,” says Wax.
This is not the first time authors have done unusual book signings. For the release of Margaret Atwood's novel The Year of The Flood, she held a performance at St James's, Piccadilly, London in 2009, with singers and a reading – ending with a signing inside the church. To publicise JK Rowling's book Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, in 2000, a special train named Hogwarts Express from King's Cross to Perth, carried JK Rowling and books for her to sign. When Louise Doughty's novel, Apple Tree Yard was launched in June, the author gave readings outside the Faber offices in Bloomsbury, along with a free coffee giveaway.