I am a rather shy person. I see y'all who know me rolling your eyes and shaking your heads. But I am shy. I don't like to toot my own horn, and I certainly am NOT a salesperson. In this business, however, I need to just get over myself.
In January, when I received my box of books, I dragged myself here and begged my friend who happens to be part-owner of the bookstore to allow me to have a book signing. Ellen was extraordinarily gracious and, much to my surprise, more than happy to offer her services. On March 7th, I had my first book signing. It was great fun. I had threatened all of my friends and family appropriately and forced my father to serve wine to prevent people from running out the door. Phew, book signing number one was a success.
Onto book signing number two. With the help of family, I managed to secure a signing at Malaprops in Asheville, North Carolina. Finding Malaprop's was a piece of cake. It was finding North Carolina that we had trouble with. That story will be told at a later time. Anyway, Malaprop's wanted a reading. Please refer to Paragraph 1 of this post regarding my inherent shyness. This was a nightmare to me. A huge obstacle and one I sweated about. My kind friend, Ellen, laughed and told me to pick a paragraph or two and keep it under three minutes. Three minutes is a life time when reading ones own words.
I didn't read. Couldn't. Nope. No way. What I did do is play on one of my strengths -- talking. I love to talk. And I had a whole room full of people ready to listen to me. So I talked about the Niger Delta and about the plight of the gray wolves. I was nervous. I kept that "three minute" number in my head and blabbered away. In hindsight, I probably could have slowed down just a bit and relaxed. But Ellen said three minutes, damn it. And that's what I was going to do. So in three minutes, I educated everyone on the Niger Delta and the gray wolves. You can imagine how fast I was talking. But I survived.
And now I am on a mission to find other independent book stores to allow me a signing. It's not easy to garner book signings. Actually, it's plain frustrating. But it's my job. Because after this month, Devil's Gold is no longer new. I am the person that has to push it out there and keep it fresh.
On a totally unrelated subject -- I have some very cool bookmarks. So if any of you have my book and would like a bookmark, just let me know!