Many writers dream of going to Barnes and Noble and see their book on the shelf. As an independent author, this dream can seem far more distant. However, last weekend, due to some personal connections and the nation-wide Teen Book Festival, I was able to share my book at the local Barnes and Noble.
It was a strange experience to carry my own books into the store and set them on a table to sell without checking in with anyone (everything had been arranged beforehand with the Community Business Manager). This is not how a trip to the book store usually goes.
It was also exciting to have a good crowd show up. The crowd included fans of books in general, fans of the other authors, and, this being my home town, a number of my own friends – even ones who’ve already bought the book.
The other authors (Robin LaFevers, Sarah Lynn Scheerger, and Rachel Marks) and I shared our experiences with the crowd. I’ve enjoyed all the author panels I’ve been on this past year, where I’ve been with much more accomplished and experienced authors, and am treated as their equal. The writer crowd is a gracious and generous group of people, and I love hearing other authors’ experiences.
The other books by my fellow authors are great dark young adult novels – including assassin nuns in the medieval period, demons dwelling in Los Angeles, and true-to-life depictions of teen pregnancy and high school bomb threats. These all take on challenging issues and weave compelling stories.
It’s also ironic beside my book, which is meant to leave you feeling like you had a plate of cookies with milk.
I’m glad the readers who came had a wide variety to explore – isn’t that the magic of stories and book stores? There’s something for everyone?
The best part of the signing was being surprised by the visit of this awesome Girl Scout troop. We volunteered together last year at a major event, where I demonstrated my incredibly famous (or not) fake rock band, the P.N. Guins. Per their request, I’m hoping to set up an introductory post in the near future. The short version is, it’s a fun, incredibly silly comedy act I came up with while working at summer camp and I have performed at various talent shows. I never thought it would help me sell books.
This is a great group of ladies and it was awesome to catch up with them.
The best part of book signings is reminding us authors the value of all of our hours of artist angst and hard work – at the end of the road are excited readers, waiting to enjoy the ride we’ve created.
I want to thank again my fellow authors Robin LaFevers, Sarah Lynn Scheerger, and Rachel Marks, Barnes and Noble of Ventura, my sister Kayla who took great pictures, and the many awesome people who came. I had a lot of fun, met some great people, and am even more pumped to finish publishing the next book.
Here’s a video of the event Sarah Lynn Sheerger put together:
Side Note 2: In case you missed it here’s the trailer for the upcoming Beauty and the Beast adaptation starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens (who I find much more exciting after recently watching the 2008 BBC Sense and Sensibility, but that’s another story)
I love this trailer because it basically says, “We don’t have to tell you anything about the story. All we have to do is say, ‘The movie’s coming. We know you’re excited and will come see it.'”