Happy May 1! The concept: Gathering around a pole in May to celebrate Spring. http://www.historicalharmonies.org/mapypoledanceorigins.htm Beautifully dressed people, a beribboned post, happy folks dancing around the pole to the right, entwining their ribbons, then dancing to the left, untangling themselves. Sounds sweet and simple, doesn’t it? Ha! As “sweet and simple” as choreographing a book signing, I’d say.
On my website I’m spending the next months talking about the five follies of book signings: http://rolynnanderson.com
But today, I want to tell you a story about the book signing I recently held at a golf pro shop for BAD LIES http://a.co/0DuYNPn, giving you an example of how we can never predict promo problems.
It’s an hour before the book signing and I’m hauling my stuff into the pro shop to set up my table. I am over-prepared and early…my usual self. My arms are full of stuff as I stumble into the room. I see James, who’s working behind the counter, and I can tell from the look in his eyes, he’s startled to see me, even after all my e-mail reminding, press releases, posters, and newspaper articles. I give a heavy sigh mentally (we shoulder on, after all), and as I put my things on the floor (no table in sight), I notice that a pall has come over the room. The Masters Tournament is playing on two TV’s, with the sound turned off. I glance at the TV to see a pro hitting a great tee shot. Why is it so quiet in a room with twenty men eating and drinking and watching the Masters?
The first thing I think is: These guys have no time for an author of romantic suspense. They want to drink beer, eat hamburgers and watch the damn Masters. Get this writer out of my pro shop.
I look around the room again. All the men are ignoring me, and since James has been surprised by my appearance, his day has gotten complicated. Again, I suppress a sigh, thinking I may have picked the wrong venue for my golf novel. How can I build interest with a group of men who are shunning me?
James goes off to find a table for me while I watch the men. Now I see fellows gesturing to each other. Smiling. Not laughing. Pointing to the TV. Giving high fives. Gutteral sounds of happiness or anguish. The bartender gives me a look but doesn’t say a thing.
And then I see fingers flying with sign language and men standing up to get the attention of other guys across the room by waving their hands.
Yes. You have it now, don’t you? The mystery solved. Every single man in the room was deaf except for James. For the next hour the only males entering the room were speechless. I set up my table quietly among golfers who had recently finished 18 rounds of a Tournament for the Deaf. A yearly event at Cypress Ridge Golf Course. Who knew?
The experience teaches me a thing or two about promo. Never think the worst about an audience that does not respond to your glorious novels. They might be deaf to your pitch (or not readers, or not readers of fiction, or not readers of your genre, or audio only, or Kindle only…).
We mush on no matter what the ‘condition’ of the environment. The goal: put our novels in the hands of readers. (Postscript: The booksale was a great success. I sold 24 books, made some new friends, and made history by holding a book signing in a pro shop!)
So here’s my golf/pro shop novel, BAD LIES http://a.co/0DuYNPn:
Italy’s haunted caves spell danger for an American golfer and a NATO geologist
Sophie Maxwell is a late-blooming, unorthodox golfer, and mother of a precocious thirteen year-old. Determined to put divorce, bankruptcy, and a penchant for gambling in her past, Sophie goes to Italy for a qualifying golf tournament.
Jack Walker turned his back on a pro golfing career to become a geologist. As a favor to his ailing father he’ll caddy for Sophie; off hours, he’ll find caves on the Mediterranean coast, suitable for NATO listening posts for terrorist activity.
Someone is determined to stop Jack’s underground hunt and ruin Sophie’s chances to win her tournament.
On a Rome golf course and in the Amalfi coast’s haunted caves, all the odds are stacked against Sophie and Jack. In their gamble of a lifetime, who wins?
Seven Suspense Novels Spiked with Romance
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