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Sunday, June 24, 2012

BookFest Recap and Miscellany

Yesterday was Glen Ellyn BookFest. I actually sold a book! Also handed out fliers and business cards which I hope will lead people to check out my ebooks and various web locations. I got to meet people and talk about writing with other authors which is always a great experience.

I decided at the last minute to get in on Pitchfest to give a one-minute sales pitch on "The Dreamer Gambit." Because I did not plan and rehearse, it was something of a disaster. I probably should have read the blurb off the back instead of trying to ad lib. And having a one minute time limit adds another layer of stress on top of facing a sea of people. Funny thing is, I managed to do the same thing--give a quick description of the book--to a number of people who came to the authors' tent looking to buy books. Guess I just do better in the one-on-one, which leads me to the conclusion that I need to work on speaking to larger audiences. I've had some experience with that in the past--giving a training class at the City of Naperville many moons ago and speaking to the Lunchtime Rotary Club on the City's Y2K plans--but it's been a long time and I was prepared for those. Perhaps the larger lesson here is to always be prepared. I need to be ready to talk about my work to any audience, from one to a hundred, anytime, anywhere. This is something I had not previously thought much about, and I'm considering it a lesson learned, thanks to BookFest.

While in the authors' tent, I was approached by someone from the Glen Ellyn Library about possibly coming to do a talk of some kind. I hope she did not see my performance at Pitchfest and change her mind. I think I could handle sitting with a small group and discussing my writing experiences and the craft itself. Just being asked was a thrill, another milestone in feeling like a Real Author.

A few more take-aways from the event: I will probably sign up for the Chicago Writers Association which I learned more about at the authors' breakfast. Randy Richardson spoke to the group about it, and it sounds like something else I should get into. Also, I spoke to some people who were at Love Is Murder in February, and I know I have to sign up for the 2013 event. Who knows? I might get another opportunity to be on a panel.

Ahead in July: Kindle Book Review is going to announce the semi-finalists in the Best Indie Books of 2012 contest. "Two Faces, Two Faced" is my entry. If I make the first cut, i.e., my books goes to the judges, I'll have bragging rights on that, which would be great ad copy with the sequel coming soon. Later in July, I should be getting some idea of what I sold in the appropriate quarter (Apr-Jun for Write Words, Jan-Mar for most everyone else). Let's see what my publicity push accomplished!

For the nonce, back to writing.

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