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Community Highlights: Meet Susan McBeth of Adventures by the Book

Today we’d like to introduce you to Susan McBeth.

Hi Susan, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I have always been a passionate reader and have attended hundreds of author events and book signings over the years. What I noticed about all of these events is that they were all basically the same, cookie-cutter if you will. I envisioned a world in which readers and authors could enjoy one of a kind events designed to offer multi-sensorial experiences that allowed readers to connect with authors and their books through taste, touch, smell, etc. After all, isn’t it more fun to meet an author over a glass of wine, or while tasting chocolate, or enjoying a decadent tea, or even traveling around the world, than it is to just sit in a plastic chair and listen to a lecture. I met Frances Mayes, international bestselling author of “Under the Tuscan Sun” at one such book signing event, and I shared with her that I would love to visit her Tuscany someday. She actually invited me to do just that, and it was then that I realized if I would enjoy that, wouldn’t her legions of adoring readers also like to do the same. It was then that the seed for Adventures by the Book was planted, and less than six months later, a small group of our first Adventurers traveled to Tuscany to visit with Frances Mayes “under the Tuscan sun.”

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
No entrepreneur could honestly tell you that the journey has been smooth sailing. There are lots of bumps and learning curves, but my philosophy is that there is no such thing as mistakes, only learning opportunities, so I have taken every one of those challenges in stride and tried to take away something new along the way. COVID is a perfect example of that not so smooth road. Yet, as all of our in-person events and travels were canceled, we viewed this as an opportunity to re-evaluate our journey and what we could take away from this experience. We have spent the last year and a half hosting Zoom events like everyone else but keeping our “multi-sensorial” approach so that each Zoom event is different than everyone else’s. Our philosophy is that if everyone else is doing it, we don’t want to do it, too. We have built a loyal fan base of readers across the nation, and not just in SoCal, and we are honored and excited that we now have a much larger community of Adventurers.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
Adventures by the Book was founded in order to offer worldwide opportunities for readers to connect with authors and their books through unique, adventurous, and interesting events and travels. We are known for our brand of multi-sensorial experiences with authors, a world in which you can sip wine with an author, enjoy a chocolate or cheese tasting, enjoy a decadent literary tea, experience an ethnic meal, and even travel around the world, something that we have been told, even ten years after founding our business in 2011, that nobody else is doing like we do. We pride ourselves of the relationships we have developed with readers and authors and the trust that has built that solidifies our reputation in the literary event space.

We’d love to hear about any fond memories you have from when you were growing up?
I came from humble beginnings, so there was no money to buy books very often. However, every Saturday morning, I was allowed to jump on my pink bicycle with white-flowered basket down to the local library, and I was allowed to check out as many books as my basket could carry. Every week, the basket would be overflowing, and I spent hours in my bedroom reading amazing tales and taking virtual journeys around the world. Who could have known then that I am still reading amazing tales, but now am taking in person journeys with those books, a dream come true.

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