Friday, November 14, 2008

Reflection on my first book-signing

About 10 brave souls ignored the interminable, depressing, stultifying Maine rain last night and attended my first ever book-signing! That's not counting the 3 from the bookstore who dutifully sat through my reading. I'm not going to name names - you know who you are if you came - but I want to say THANK YOU one and all for not leaving me hanging in the breeze. And thanks to Kenny for taking a chance on me. I doubt he made enough money to offset staying open late.

I read for about 15-20 minutes, answered a few questions afterwards, and sold 9 books!

From the audience reaction and my conversations afterwards, I think my descriptions of "guerilla marketing" my book were the hit of the evening, even moreso than hearing excerpts from by book. My latest idea in that regard is that I have started putting a bookmark (which directs the reader to my website) inside postage paid envelopes that come in junk mail and mailing them back. Just since I thought of it I've mailed out 4. And today I decided to start including a bookmark with any bills I mail. In all instances, a human being opens the envelope, so who knows - that person might visit my website. In the former instance, they'll likely be pissed when they open the envelope their company paid the postage on, only to find an advertisement. But, hey - they sent me their crap without permission! In the latter instance, perhaps they won't start out hostile since I am indeed paying a bill.

Although, when I think about it, that job must be tedious beyond belief. So perhaps in neither instance will the human on the other end of my scheme be too receptive. However, after a year goes by, and I have sent out hundreds of bookmarks, statistics would likely indicate that one of them would actually follow up.

Before the signing, a guy introduced himself to me who lives in Weld, knew Ginsburg and Corso, managed Earth Opera, and on and on. His name is Robert Zachary. INTERESTING GUY! Seems like a beat character. Why is it I keep meeting beat characters named Robert in Maine (this one makes 3). I suspect Robert #3 and I have some interesting things to talk about and learn from each other.

Speaking of which, cooler heads prevailed today when I stopped at the vet for cat food and didn't bring home a cat (his name is Kobe, abandoned outside the animal shelter, just had surgery on his left ear from digging it raw getting after earmites, all black, friendly). Kerouac loved cats. I love cats.

But you know that . . . .

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