Yes, I know I have two books professionally published. I’ve had reviews of my books appear in real review publications. I’ve had readings. I’ve presented at conferences. I’ve done book signings. I’ve won awards for my books. But I’ll be honest: yesterday was the first day I’ve felt like a real, honest-to-goodness author.
What happened? I walked into 2 different Barnes & Noble bookstores (any bookstores would have done, but they would have had to be stores that didn’t know I was coming ahead of time) at random, went to the shelves, found my book, and went to the store clerks and offered to sign the copies they had. (There were 8 in the first store (in Portsmouth, NH), across three different areas, and 11 in the second in 2 areas (in Burlington, MA).) In both cases, the staff were really excited to meet me and asked if I’d like to come back to do a real signing. (I explained I was just passing through, and politely declined.)
So why does that make me feel like a real author when all the other things didn’t? I think it’s because it’s tangible. It’s something I didn’t have any real hand in creating. Just knowing that my book is out there across stores in the country, prominently displayed . . . it’s a really nice feeling.
I think some of it is also due to the fact that it’s something I tried to experience with VODNIK and never really got to. It wasn’t for a lack of trying. When VODNIK came out, I went into a handful of stores at random over the course of several months as I traveled from place to place. Each time, I had a small nugget of hope that maybe my book would be there. Each time, I was disappointed.
So having the experience now was all the sweeter.
Anyway. Just wanted to share the feeling with you all. My hope is to hit the Danvers, MA and maybe even the Saugus, MA stores this evening, because dinner is for the weak. (And seeing my book in print is kind of contagious.)
If you live around one of those Barnes & Noble stores, stop in and grab a signed copy of THE MEMORY THIEF today! And thanks for all the pictures and reports of book sightings. Keep them coming!