Grandma Gertie always said there's not a savory dish that can't be made tastier by just a touch of tarragon.

Tsunami and Me

Tsunami and Me
too big to escape now....

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

You Can Book Me

Authors' Fair, San Bernardino Public Library 4/11/14
At the San Bernardino Public Library's annual Authors' Fair I didn't sell many books. Neither did many of the other authors, so I don't take the lack of sales personally. Despite a good publicity push by Linda Adams Yeh, people seemed to find other things to do on a Saturday other than chat with local writers. Many of those who did attend expressed interest in certain titles, but also indicated their disposal income had already been disposed elsewhere. Possibly at the grocery store on Friday night.

Nonetheless, the participating writers themselves seemed to enjoy talking to one another and exchanging ideas and tips on how to market books and stories.

Highlights for me included hanging out with neighboring authors, former San Bernardino Sun columnist John Weeks, cartoonist and Uncle Jam publisher Phil Yeh and children and YA novel writer Beth Winokur.

And a surprise for me...a reunion after 60 years with a high school acquaintance who had been married to a fellow Scian social club member, and who lives in nearby Riverside.

Other memorable moments in The Inland Empire:
  • Listening to Phil explain to a bewildered browser that what we indeed were selling were books, yes, books. Imagine selling books in a public library. Books!
  • Suggesting to a woman who leafed through a copy of Not Your Mother's Book...On SEX, which includes my story, "The French Way," that no, it's not particularly suitable as a gift for a 14-year-old girl.
  • Overhearing visitors express disbelief that John Weeks could not be "friended" on Facebook...not that he's a recluse. He simply doesn't maintain a social media presence.
  • Watching program librarian Linda Adams Yeh scurry from table to table, making every participant feel valued, through the genuine warmth of her welcome and interest in our well-being. Did we need a snack? Did we want to take a brief stroll to stretch our legs? Did we need help getting the books back to the car? 
No, it's not always about selling the books and counting the dollars, though I did stop to deposit a couple of checks at my local ATM. For me the joy derived from belonging to a community of writers and readers...from being among kindred spirits.

My son later reminded me that selling five print books in today's digital age is nothing to sneeze at. That encouraged me. Yes, I'd do it again. Have books, will travel.

It's still a delight to know I have stories in over a hundred books, and that people are reading them.

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