While I'm waiting to have a phone conference with my editor to talk about marketing issues, I thought we could take a brief break from the book lauching biz so that I could tell you what a complete thrill it was for me this weekend to hear Nancy Pearl, Librarian Extraordinaire speak. Omigod. She is amazing! A bonafide rock star in sensible shoes.
And, as you can see, she has her OWN shushing Action Figure. The deluxe edition figure even comes with a book cart. If I ever have my own Mary Hershey action figure, it will be shushing, too.
It's not too big a stretch to imagine that a librarian is an introvert. I could have probably pegged that even before hearing her speak. But, she is such an extraordinary example of someone that is SO introverted and SO in the public eye. In 1998, she developed the program "If All of Seattle Read the Same Book," which has spread all over the country. She is a regular commentator about books on National Public Radio's "Morning Edition" and NPR affiliate stations in Seattle and Tulsa. In 2004, she became the 50th winner of the Women’s National Book Association Award for her stellar contribution to the world of books.
She is the author of Book Lust, More Book Lust , and Book Crush, which are compilations of book reviews from all genres. Book Crush is for children's books. She credits a teen for that wonderful title.
During her talk, she told a very funny story about a breakfast event she had to attend, and how she dreaded it for days. She couldn't imagine she would have anything to say to anyone at her assigned table. Can you imagine? She-who-has-read-every-book-ever-written and remembers it with a savante-like ability! She ended up sitting with three men with a collective linguistic reciprocity score of minus three. Her desperate attempts to carry on a conversation with them had us howling. Part of the problem, Nancy shared, was that one of the men was very tanned and had shiny loafers with tassles. I so get that! Tassled footwear just puts me under the table, too!
She also can't abide the phone, channels another person entirely when public speaking, and prefers reading to most all life activities. I'm resting my case here. Nancy Pearl moves right into our Shrinking Violet Hall of Fame. Love her!
MARKETING HOMEWORK FOR THIS WEEK:
1. Research postcard and bookmark vendors
2. Brainstorm tie-ins for giveaways at book signings