2019 has been a good year so far. I’ve had my head down for most of the time since 1st January, writing my next book – my excuse for not posting here for a goodish while. However, yesterday was a different day and one I’d like to share with you.
|At home and ready for the off|
WHSmith very kindly offered to host me for a book-signing event in their Lewisham branch. As instructed, I prepared and supplied some posters which they put in the window for a week prior to my designated day. Arriving late morning as arranged and armed with copies of The Ghost of Glendale I approached a member of staff. Imagine my delight when they gave me a table right at the front, near the entrance to the store. And they provided me with a bright red cloth with which to cover it.
Setting up took very little time and I sat down to wait, knowing that I might have to wait for a long time, if not all day. Even with four published books I am not, after all, a well-known author. Not yet anyway. There was a pretty healthy footfall and it certainly wasn’t difficult to engage with people. My first ‘customers’ were a delightful young couple who bought two books – and then, another! The first was for his mother, as a Mother’s Day gift, and the second for his partner. I’m sure you can imagine my delight when they walked away and, after only a few paces, he turned back and said he’d actually take another one because he was certain his gran would like it too. If that wasn’t a good way to start the day, I’d like to know what would be.
|Starting to set up 'shop'|
A smile would bring someone over for a chat, some eager to tell me about their own endeavours, some looking in wonder as I admitted that yes, I was indeed the author. As the day progressed I met a lot of people who were keen to discuss my writing with me. Well, I was in a book shop! Suffice it to say that I didn’t sit idly watching the world pass me by. There was one lady who not only bought not only a copy of my book but also the current issue of The People’s Friend Special in which I have a story (we’d been discussing how I began my writing career with short stories).
|Chatting about my book|
Image courtesy of fellow-author Sarah Stephenson
who dropped in to say hello
A huge ‘thank you’ is due to the manager, Rob Peters, and his staff who went out of their way to make me welcome and comfortable. A word of appreciation also to WHSmith who employ a policy of encouraging local writers. Rob also took some of my books to put on their shelves. That felt really good.
To recap, I knew there was a possibility that I would have no-one but myself to talk to all day. Never a good thing. Had I not sold a single book, the time would still have been well-invested. It was a truly positive experience which took place in very pleasant surroundings and I would encourage anyone who might be contemplating doing the same to give it a go.
Till next time.