I missed my regular blog post date and time. In apologies, I can only say that I am literally on the road between cities and book signing-events. I just finished four days of events in northern Alberta and have just begun another four days of such events in central Alberta. On Sunday, late afternoon, I will make the six hour drive back to my home.
So what is it like being on a book-signing tour? To be honest, there is no simple answer. The driving part is the worst. Trying to find meals that are worth eating is often a chore which has me pass up on such meals from time to time, especially if I have had a 3 pm to 8 pm session in a bookstore. Just as hard, if not harder, is the wait for someone to actually stop at the table that has been provided for me or for any author who appears in the store. Some pass by the book display with a disgruntled look as if you have deliberately intruded on their shopping experience. Others smile and make appreciative comments such as “Congratulations for publishing a book!”
However, every once in a while, someone will stop, intrigued with a book cover. That is when it gets interesting. A conversation between self and other sometimes even leads to a sale. The conversations and the sales act magically to erase the negative doubts about being on the book-signing tour. On a decent day, ten or more books are sold this way. The best I have done has been between 20 and 30 books.
With the day done, I retreat into a small rented bedroom to crash. Because I am an introvert, being out there in public, hawking my books, leaves me exhausted. Is it worth it? So far, I have sold close to 1000 paperback books because I put myself out there. It can’t be about the profit, because there really isn’t any money to be made with this volume of sales, especially since the number represents three years of sales. Regardless, the idea of 1000 paperback books having been bought, held and read by others is a feeling that is beyond priceless.
2 thoughts on “Book Selling and Signing”
Congratulations, Robert! And thanks for posting this in the midst of your traveling salesman experience.
Thanks Will. Needless to say I am exhausted by the whole process.