After a few months playing hermit, I came out of hiding a few weeks ago to find a fantastically active poetry scene. My favorite reading, East of Edith, is on hiatus, but I've still managed to get to at least one poetry reading a week since I came out of hibernation: Poetry & Beer, OutSpoken, Adobe Walls and Final Friday. I missed MAS Poetry, and I might miss this week's Fixed & Free and Poetry Night at Bookworks.
The wicked truth be told, I'm partly going to all these readings because my first book is coming out in November and I want to cultivate and in some cases reconnect with my audience. It's my first venture into heavily marketing a book (the publisher has a minimum sales requirement to keep the book in print), but from several authors I've heard or read two bits of advice consistently: (1) Readings and other events where the writer interacts closely with the audience are the best opportunities for sales, and (2) Always carry copies to sell, because you never know. (I'm carrying copies of a chapbook until the book comes out.)
Of course, marketing a book of poems generally isn't about making money (except maybe breaking even). Usually it's about the same thing reading at open mics and slams is -- finding audiences, writers and perhaps communities.
One community I've found is a group of writers who've also published with an imprint of WordTech Communications. We're trading advice about marketing and recommendations for reading and submissions. Since I've found those so useful, I'll try to pay it forward with (hopefully) useful blogs of my first book experience as it unfolds.