Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Big July begins

The Big July is off to a flying start, with 69 books already sold at the first two stores!
Well, I kicked off the humoungous tour of 50 stores, across three states and the ACT, over 30 days, at Maitland.This is the third time I've been to the A+R at Maitland and one thing I have learned is they love a chat up there!
I would have to say Maitland is probably the friendliest of all the areas I have been to - even the people who brush me off do so very politely, with a smile!
I was met up there by Deb Tate, and her two kids. Deb is a Facebook Friend and it was lovely to start it off with someone who was excited about the books and had come along to deliberately buy The Radiant Child, as opposed to someone who'd never heard of me before!
Sadly I had to cut things short at Maitland, in order to get back down to Borders Tuggerah. I had planned to get there at 2pm and ended up being about 10 minutes late, because people at Maitland kept wanting to talk.
One charming older man told me he never read fantasy, then spent a good 10 minutes going through the A+R shelves and bringing over books he thought I'd like to read! (He recommends The Kite Runner, by the way).
I met a couple of budding young writers, who were just finishing their first works - and hope that seeing if I can do it, they can as well.
Things had gone pretty well at Maitland - but they went off at Tuggerah!
For the first half hour or so, I was just signing and chatting to people who had come in to buy either just book three, or books two and three, as well as the grandparents of my son's best friend, who had come in specially to buy all three. I didn't have to try out any lines on people for ages!
Best of all was hearing from people who had read The Wounded Guardian and The Risen Queen and couldn't wait to read Radiant Child. I can never get tired of hearing that people have really enjoyed the books. After all, that was why they were written.
But when I got down to chatting to people, I found plenty who loved fantasy - must have been one of those Sundays!
An older couple ended up buying all three ... the man said he used to read fantasy but hadn't for years but was retiring soon and needed something to get him out of his wife's hair! I didn't think they would buy one, or perhaps just The Wounded Guardian but they bought the whole trilogy. Just as I was finishing, they walked out of the store, having obviously spent most of the time down in the Gloria Jeans section, where he told me he was already halfway through The Wounded Guardian as he couldn't put it down!
Another older chap listened patiently as I talked about the books, then strolled into Borders, saying he would think about it, which is usually code for ``I'd rather have dental surgery''. But a few minutes later, he's back, having picked one off the shelf inside and wanting me to sign it for him!
At one point, I had three people around me going through the books and I was down to just two of The Wounded Guardians, so had to desperately signal for Kellie, one of the managers at Borders, to bring out extra stock!
The guys at Borders were fantastic, led by Mark and Kellie. Mark spent the last hour out the front with me, trying to offer me food and drinks and, at the end, they presented me with a box of chocolates to say thankyou!
So, off to a great start ... next stop Brisbane!

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