Self published authors have a daunting task trying to "get their book out there". I am no expert, but I have had some success with local book signings.
Here are some tips I have if you are wanting to have your own local book signing. Most of these come from trial and error!
1. Free food is awesome!
Here's a picture of "Tragedy Tarts" I made based on the plot of my book. The response was great! I handed out recipes at the book signing, and even had a chef in New York make their own spin on them.
Free food, especially food related to your book in some way, always works wonders getting people to your table!
2. Signs are important
Many people will "browse" and may not want to approach your table and engage with you. Have some signs that explain who you are, what your book is about, and maybe even the price, so the shy customer can read about you at a distance.
3. Advertise, but don't spend too much money on it
Free is better! You can pay to have advertisements places on newspapers and local stations, but if you can get interviews prior to your signing with local TV and radio stations, that is even better. You can get the word out about your book, and let people learn more about you as an author.
4. Bookmarks are cool, but goodie bags are better.
Paper products don't move that fast off your table, even bookmarks (and bookmarks are cool!). But if you put them into goodie bags with candy or chocolate, they will be sure to find a new home. Goodie bags work better than a basket of candy. I suppose people don't want to get caught with their hand in the candy jar!
5. Have a screen set up with a trailer of your book
I have never gotten the technicalities worked out to have this going, but I have seen other authors do it and it is perfect! Having audio or soft music with the trailer really entices people to your table.