Monday, June 10, 2013

Final thoughts on Valley Of Shields tour

I had set aside April to get back into bookstores and help promote Valley Of Shields.

Apart from enjoying getting out and meeting new bookstore owners and, most importantly, readers,  obviously the second book of the series is the hardest to sell.

The first book of a trilogy is fresh and exciting, in so many ways. The third book of a trilogy is a thrilling conclusion and readers, especially fantasy readers, are delighted to know a series is finished and they don’t have to wait any longer, nor worry about the author dying before finishing.

Seriously, an author could develop hypochondria the way some fantasy readers ask after your health all the time.

`You’re not going to die on us, are you?’ they ask, half-smiling and half-concerned.

`Fit as a fiddle!’ I usually say, with a big grin.

But then they go away and the doubts begin to seep in. Am I really that healthy? What about that strange pain in the middle section? Indigestion or something more serious – perhaps an Alien-like infestation growth about to burst from my chest? Am I just warm from the shopping centre airconditioning or is it the first sign of a rare and exotic jungle fever? Has the Muzak in the centre given me the beginnings of a headache or do I have a pulsating tumour about to split my skull?

Anyway ….

The problem with the middle book of the series is you have none of that excitement and the added challenge of asking people to have bought the first book before they can start it. For those who didn’t realise you had a new series out there, that’s a cool $60 bucks for two books, thanks. (Although almost all stores that I visit do put a bit of a discount on – so watch out for my tours, because not only can you get signed copies but save a few dollars along the way).

Still, I was visiting Perth for the first time, a bunch of stores who are old friends and a handful of new ones, then finishing off with the National Fantasy Convention in Canberra, held within Conflux, where I would officially launch Valley Of Shields.

That was the plan.

Perth went great and I had a wonderful time there.

But then I had a family health emergency and had to cancel a bunch of stores and then the ones I did appear at, my mind was not wholly on the job.

Still, the good news is, all has turned out well.

And I am planning a massive tour to finish Empire Of Bones and support Wall Of Spears. I’m thinking about seven weeks, taking me through Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.

I hope to see you along the way!

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