We woke yesterday to thunder and the sound of heavy rain overflowing the eavestroughs. This is not something you want to hear on the day you're scheduled to do a book signing in the out of doors.
There's an old adage that goes: rain before 7; clear before 11. I tried to focus on that as I got ready to leave. And sure enough, by 9 a.m., a brief glimpse of sun, and there was not another drop of rain after that.
Yesterday was the first time I signed copies of Growing Up Ivy for the public. The signing went very well. So well, in fact, that the store ran out of copies, and we had to use some of my own stock that I'd brought with me (always a good idea, I have learned).
The only advertising we had was a no-cost announcement in the Community Events column on the back pages of the local newspaper the day before. The secret to our success was to coordinate the book signing with an event already taking place, one where we knew there'd be lots of people, people who had not left their wallets at home.
This weekend is the annual summer sidewalk sale in the city, so I was guaranteed a steady stream of people strolling by my table. I was also very lucky that the shop owner's wife sat with me under the sun umbrella, and she's a friendly, outgoing person. While I would say, "hi," to anyone looking in our direction, Kathy would say, "Good morning. How are you today?" and invite them to come and meet a local author. And a number of them did, and stayed to buy a book and have it signed.
I had a good time. It was vastly better than sitting alone at a table in a bookstore, watching customers try to avoid me, and hoping my family would soon show up.
I've decided that everyone should have someone like Kathy as part of their PR team.