I decided to report on the Tucson Festival of Books via my blog, rather than on FB — first, because I have a lot to tell, and second, because my blog posts are networked to FB, so friends and readers on both places will have access to it. (Although I will post photos on FB soon!)
What a fab weekend! What an awesome festival! Now the fourth biggest book fair in the country, even though it only started four years ago. More than 100,000 people attend over the two days. So it’s kinda like the population of a small city congregating in the mall of the University of Arizona.
I spent both Saturday and Sunday, even spent the night in Tucson to avoid driving home (almost an hour each way) in between two very full days. This also allowed me to spend more time with my friend and fellow writer, Terra Trevor, who flew in from California to participate in a panel — titled after her book, Pushing Up The Sky.
I attended Terra’s session first thing on Sat., then we moved on to a Social Media presentation (this stuff always makes my head spin, even though I am already fully in it and doing my best to utilize these avenues to promote my book). We had lunch with a few of my friends, then went to a session by T.C. Boyle, an author I love with all my heart. I have a few of his books and my favorite is Drop City, a hippie era novel. I bought another one of his, a compilation of short stories, and stood in line to have him sign it. PLUS had someone take a picture of us (shameless groupie that I am). He is a wild man, and I wish I had enough time left in life to accomplish what he has. Although I do have enough time left to be as eccentric as he is. So maybe that’s enough.
At the end of Sat., Terra and I went to the no-host Author Reception at a pub near the university, and had a drink with a few writer/publisher friends of mine. That was fun, but noisy, since it was in the middle of a UA basketball game against Colorado. Things quieted down after Arizona lost. Terra and I, both exhausted, went in search of dinner, and finally got into Chili’s, where we were able to talk some more about our lives and adoption stuff.
Sunday, I was scheduled for an early slot in the festival’s Author Pavilion. Much coffee was needed to get me up, ready, and at the booth by around 9. Thank you, Terra, for your support and for helping me tote all my stuff. (Her book has been out for six years, so she’s used to this kinda thing. She understands the initial exhilarating rush of having a new book out there, and encouraged me to enjoy this time!) I only sold two books — not surprising, when you consider all the competition at the festival, so many things to see, booths drawing people in, books to buy. I talked to a lot of people, passed out info about my book, and had a blast. So all in all, it was a success. Number of books sold be damned!
I have several more events, some speaking to groups, some just showing up to sell books, in the next two months. Both the ebook and the print version of Second-Chance Mother are doing great on Amazon and B&N, as well as my local bookstore. I’ve sold around 70 copies myself in just a month What more could I ask for?
Not the NY Times best seller list, but respectable for a new book by an unknown author. The positive response I’ve received, how I have touched so many hearts, means far more to me.
Thanks to everyone who has read and reviewed me, who has supported me through this process (not just the book, but in my childhood and then my pregnancy and relinquishment years, and during my reunion)l but also my new friends, both online and in real life. I treasure you and couldn’t have done this without your support and love.