Sunday, November 13, 2005

How do you spell "successful signing?"

I don't do a lot of booksignings. For one thing, I'm not a famous, NY Times-bestselling author, so if I do a local signing, I pretty much wind up feeling like Oliver Twist when he ventures forth to ask for "more." Or else I get nudge-nudge-wink-wink comments from passersby about "those kinds of books." Having been in this business a long time, I am weary of trying to educate people about romance and somebody wandering by a table in a store being "clever" isn't exactly a receptive audience anyway.

Signings can be pleasant, though. I always do the big signings at Romance Writers of America national conventions. Now that I've been at this writing gig awhile, I actually get people looking for me, editions of my books they've had for years in their hands for me to autograph. THAT is a thrill that never gets old.

I did a signing this past Friday that was better than most. I was signing with Maggie Shayne, a NY Times bestselling author and Eve Silver, a member of my local RWA chapter. Eve was signing her first book, so her family and friends came out, as did several of our fellow chapter members. Eve's enthusiasm sometimes made me feel like a jaded cynic (shades of the hero of my w-i-p!), but it also reminded me of the special excitement of having your first published book hit the shelves. Eve fearlessly took on PR and did a wonderful job. The stores' "experience co-ordinator" (yes, that's really her title) was keen and had everything all set up when we got there. Maggie Shayne was a pleasant, friendly co-signee. I enjoyed myself. I didn't once feel like a beggar at the gates. And hey, I even sold some books! That's what I call a successful signing.

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