Step 1: Work with a talented, dedicated media specialist like Lisa Petroccia, for example, who may or may not be mentioned in my next novel. :)
Step 2: Show up at the school's cafetorium and discover someone's forgotten lunch on the stage, along with a table displaying your books and a lovely purple orchid.
Step 3: Talk to 400 6th graders about the embarrassing things you did when you were their age. Throw in a story or two about how you sold your book. (Be sure to include all the hard parts like the, er, 9,756,832 rejections you've received.)
Step 4: Read the part of your book that includes Arnold Schwarzenegger. If your book doesn't include parts with the California governor, why not? Stop reading because the bell rings. Leave all the kids wondering what happens next so they HAVE to buy your book.
Step 5: Show up at Barnes & Noble approximately on time. Sit at a table piled high with your books. Direct people to the bathroom when they ask.
Step 7: Act a little bit like an idiot when your son's kindergarten teacher shows up.
Step 8: And when one of your besties comes to support you.
Step 9: And your husband . . . because he has to, plus he's really nice and likes hanging out in bookstores.
Step 10: Sign books for approximately 5,293,285 girls and one boy. The girls will want you to sign their books with a purple pen, if you have one. Have one. Sign the boy's book with black ink. Trust me on this.
Step 11: Have a great time talking with the kids and their parents, especially the parents who happen to be high school reading teachers or come from Philadelphia, like you. "Go, Eagles!"
Step 12: While chatting with the children, remember why you love doing this so much.
Step 12 3/4: When the books are gone, go home.