Monday, April 30, 2012

Book Signings

My first book signing happened a few months after I'd given birth to 13 pounds of twins. So beforehand, I went shopping to find a magical dress that would hide the fact that I still looked like I was carrying around an undisclosed child in my stomach.

I still remember the sales clerk's reaction when I told her about the event.  She looked at me dreamily and said, "I've always wanted to do a book signing."

I've thought about that statement several times over the years. During some signings, I wish I'd taken her name and number and hired her to do mine for me.

Because yes, some of them really are that bad.  Once only one person walked into the bookstore during the entire signing. (On the bright side, I did sell him a book, so in that regard it was my only 100% successful signing.)  Another time the bookstore obviously forgot I was coming. They'd done no advertising and just set me up in a chair in the corner of the store and ignored me. And I'll never forget the time I brought a pen with golden ink so my signature would be distinctive. It was distinctive all right. It leaked all over the books.

If you have a bucket list with Do a Book Signing written on it, let me save you some trouble. Choose a store, set up a table, and sit there for an hour or two while people rush by you avoiding eye contact. Then cross book signing right off your bucket list.

That said, I'll be doing two book signings in the next week. Yes, actually I am a glutton for punishment, why do you ask? (No, I'm just joking about that. Both places I'm signing are awesome, or trust me, I wouldn't have agreed to it.)

Utah friends:

Friday, May 4th 5:00-6:30 p.m.
The Provo Marriott Hotel
101 West 100 North
 Provo, Utah 84601

A ton of other authors will be there too. Literally, a ton. Although none as wonderful as me, so don't you dare go stand in their lines first. Just saying . . .

Arizona  friends:

Monday, May 7th at 7:00
Changing Hands Bookstore
6428 S McClintock Dr.
Tempe, AZ 85283

Authors Shelley Coriell and Amy Dominy will also be there. Changing Hands is promoting us as Funny Girlz, so one of us should do something amusing. I'm voting for Shelley, because she's a new author and therefore should be subjected to hazing.

15 comments:

Rebecca Belliston said...

Thanks for the laugh. Yes, signings are not always as glorious as they seem. Good luck.

Tiana Smith said...

LOL. Who knew hazings happened among authors? I SOOOO wish I could be there for the Provo one, but hubby and I will be looking at houses at that time, otherwise I'd totally be there to be first in your line - I'm sure the other authors aren't nearly as awesome as you. I think it's great that you're doing them with other authors, since I think it increases the odds of them being successful (or at least you have other people there with you so you look less awkward when everyone avoids you ...) Good luck!

Janelle said...

How did I not know you were a fellow mother of twins. I'm glad I'm in such good company! And I would fully be at both signings if they weren't multiple states away. :)

Danielle said...

As a bookseller in a tiny bookstore, we wish we had authors that wanted to sign books at our store. Whenever an author comes in to sign some of the books we have on hand, it's the best thing that could happen. We all gather and ask questions...it's a rare treat for us to meet an author.

Also, a fellow mother of twins...I wish I knew how you do it! I created my blog because it's the only way they let me get any writing done.

Taffy said...

Another mom of twins who are now driving and dating. Gah! Book signings is not on my Writer's Bucket List but if it was I'd have my twins do it for me. They'd totally love it.

CJ Hill said...

Rebecca, you sound like you've had the same kind of signings.

Tiana, yep, I love signing with other authors. That way if it's slow you can talk with them.

Janelle, Danielle, and Taffy--twin moms unite! I still remember those blurry days of no sleep. Actually, they prepared me well for the days of being an author when I get no sleep because I'm on a deadline.

Sigh. I've got a couple of those sorts of deadlines looming ahead of me.

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CJ Hill said...

Thanks, Glitter!

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Melissa said...

I only realized last summer how unglamorous some book signings could be. Since I work in a bookstore, we had this one author in for a book signing, and barely anybody gave him a look. I honestly felt so bad for him! And I had to watch the whole thing because he was stationed in such a way that he was in full view of everybody.

Twice, some people picked up the book on the table, and then put it back down and left without saying a word. But I remember one man came up to the author, asked genuinely what the book was about, and the author gladly explained the plot. The man then asked for the author to sign him a copy, and he came up to the cashiers to buy the book. It was a nice gesture. The author looked lighter all of a sudden.

Man, I'd totally go to one of your signings, but I don't even live in the States :(

(by the way, I squealed when you answered my message that I left one or two blog posts ago. Made my day! I told my friends)

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Janette Rallison said...

Melissa, I know that sort of signing well. (So do most authors.) Which is why I generally don't do signings by myself unless I'm doing a book launch. (And why I just spent 127.00 buying my friends' books at the Utah book signing.)

johan said...

nice one

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