Saturday, October 23, 2010

That Kid in the Hall is Sowing his Oates

While I’m still waiting on the fame and fortune, publishing my book has provided me with some other opportunities and experiences that are almost as valuable. From my very first reading at a library, where almost 100 people showed up, to my sell-out signing at a major bookseller (thank you Barnes & Noble) I have been overwhelmed with the support from both friends and strangers. 

I also had the chance to go on my first mini-book tour when several appearances on the Cape were scheduled for the same weekend. I took the family along and they got to frolic on the beach while I schlepped from store to store – but it was fun to come home and treat them to an ice cream with my earnings – okay, it was a single cone split between the four of them, but still. I can’t say I felt, or was treated like, a celebrity that weekend, but I did get to feel like an author (as opposed to a teacher who wrote a book.)

And then there were the book clubs – groups of woman (many hot women!) who on their own decided to choose my book for their summer reading. I was nervous at the idea of speaking in front of total strangers in such intimate settings, but luckily the first one I was invited to was being held at a brewery. Yet even that wasn’t enough to stop me from saying to my wife, “I’ll probably be back in an hour.” Five hours later, in I stumbled, more drunk on the praise and attention than the beer.  And a rock star was born!

My friend and unpaid agent, Margie, also organized two clubs. One consisted of old “friends” from high school and the other was made up of mostly strangers (to both of us) from her town, and both went wonderfully. It was nice to hear so many compliments about the book, but for me, the best part was I could now remove the quotation marks from the word friends when referring to the pretty, popular crowd I remembered from my high school days. It took twenty years, but I finally got to sit at the “cool kid” table!

But the coolest thing for me so far was writing a check (for $50!) to Darryl Hall for the rights to use lyrics to his song, “Kiss On My List” in my book. Cool really isn’t the right word -I’m just a sucker for a smooth segue – weird is probably more accurate, but the idea that an iconic 80’s singer had to cash my paltry little check just makes me laugh.

As will my book (shameless plug alert.) If you love the 80’s, or love love, or mysteries, or manatees, check out Alchemy.  And even if you don’t, try it anyway, it just might change your mind!

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