Monday, May 21, 2007

Why We Love Launching at Independent Bookstores

Dear Friends & Fellow Violets,

Yesterday, Robin and I had the great privilege of launching our new Spring titles with three other seriously cool authors at Adventures for Kids Bookstore in Ventura, California-- superhero Greg Trine, of Melvin Bederman fame, the delightful Barbara Jean Hicks, author of The secret Life of Walter Kitty, and Jody Fickes Shapiro, birth mother to the lovely Family Lullaby.

AFK opened it's doors back in 1979 under the loving and expert ministrations of Jody Fickes Shapiro, one of the 'seriously cool' authors I just mentioned. Jody turned the store over to Barbara O'Grady just over a year ago so that she could devote herself to writing and yodeling full-time. Lucky us. That's Jody pictured below signing her new book:

and also Robin and I standing with Barbara, the new owner:

It was a great event, made all the more exciting by a liter bottle of root beer that missed its calling as a torpedo, and nearly blew me out to the parking lot. Fortunately, my pants were to wet to get airborne. Greg Trine swears he and Melvin had nothing to do with it, but he couldn't promise the McNasty Brothers didn't have a hand in it. I'm sending Walter the Kitty, aka Fang, after them next time. The scoundrels. :->

During our presentation to the audience, a very articulate young girl asked what was the "hardest part" about writing. "Promotion" kept running through my head like an electronic banner, but that hardly seemed like a polite thing to say at an--um, well, promotional event.

And, generally, that is very true, but yesterday's event was a great example of how some of that can be mitigated for the introvert. For one, the environment of an indie is about reading, about connections, and much less about how many of your books get run through the scanner. Pressure is off.

Secondly, a multi-author event can create both personal energy and group synergy. It gives you an opportunity to share the spotlight and enjoy yourself, instead of feeling that every orb is trained on you, and that you might need to whip out your accordian and keep everyone happy and entertained.

I want to thank Jody and Barbara for all they did to put on such a great event, and to all the other writers that joined us, published and unpublished. It means the world to us to have you with us! Thank you! Graci! Allegato, all!


Barbara Bietz said...

Hi Girls,

I so enjoyed your group launch! What a wonderful celebration. It was great to hear you both talk about your writing process - I know the audience was enthralled! Congrats on all your wonderful success!

Mary Hershey said...

Hi, Barbara!

Thanks so much for coming-- we really appreciated seeing the familiar, friendly faces!