January 24, 2018
Today I’d like to talk about my pretties. My books. In particular, my signed books.
In the past few years I’d had the opportunity to attend many book signings, some by local and debut authors, others by those with multiple books, and still others who are New York Times best selling authors. I treasure every one of those copies. I had to buy a new bookcase to house them because I plan on collecting many more.
In every case, it has been a complete delight to attend these signings. No matter their level of fame, it seems every author is in need of the same thing. An appreciative audience. And all have been so gracious and thankful to have someone show an interest in their words.
Writing is an unusual profession in that it seems success doesn’t necessarily build confidence. Every author I’ve spoken to, and there have been many, expresses the same anxiety over their work. Is it any good? Will people like it? Will they buy it? Will my publisher and agent be happy with it, and will they ever want to publish anything I’ve written again?
Publication is no guarantee of success, a successful book is no guarantee that future books will also be successful. Each time an author submits their work, they face the fear of rejection. Of course in some cases, as in those New York Times best selling authors, the fear is less overpowering than someone submitting their very first novel. But it is still there.
To an writer, our words are like our children, and we place ourselves in a very vulnerable position when we send them out into the world.
So I urge you, when you hear of an author doing a reading, or a book signing, do yourself, and the author, a favour. Go. Chat with them. Ask questions about their process. Tell them how much you enjoyed their story. Trust me when I say, you will make that author a very happy person.
I’m so grateful to all these brave writers who put their word-children out there for us to enjoy. Keep writing my friends. The world will always need more books.