Sunday, November 7, 2010

An Amazing Book Signing

by Leann

I have done many book signings since my first book was published in 2004. Some of them were great and some too painful to even want to think about. But Thursday and Friday this past week I signed all my books at the International Quilt Festival in Houston. I was hesitant to accept the offer to sign because I have been to "festival" as it's called, many times as an admirer of all things art, quilt, fabric, thread or craft related and thus I knew what to expect--big time fatigue. More fatigue than I can handle right now. But because I love this event so much and because the vendor would be doing all the ordering, schlepping of books and money taking, I decided to accept. I'm glad I did.

This is the largest quilt festival in the world. I met people from Belgium, Germany, France, England and Brazil to name a few. I chatted with folks from all over the country. And I signed book after book after book. I signed constantly and though I wanted to get a look at the competition quilts in particular (because they absolutely blow me away) I never got the chance. I was too busy and by the end of each day too tired to do anything but walk to my car. Just to give you an idea, I gave away about 1000 bookmarks!

If what I heard is true from the attendees, those of us who are older are turning to e-readers at a very fast pace. We love our paper books, but we are downsizing for retirement or we have too many books and no where to put them. Another fascinating thing I learned is that moms of preteen girls buy cozies for their daughters. The lack of on-the-page sex, blood, profanity and gore appeals to both the moms and their daughters. This is a market I didn't know existed. Moms and daughters share their cozies--I even had a mother/daughter pair come and pick out books together, ones they would swap. And they love recipes and crafts and the adventures that our characters take them on. That was so refreshing to hear!

I also saw my next door neighbor--didn't know she was even going!--and a nurse I worked with for many years. And through the magic of Facebook, who else showed up but a guy I graduated from high school with. I won't tell you how many decades ago THAT was! His wife is a textile artist and that's why they'd come to the show. He stopped by to say hello and hear me sing. Yup. That's what he thought he'd read on Facebook--that I'd be singing, not signing. Now that would have been funny ... and a great disappointment to many.

How about you? What great fall festivals and shows and trips have you been to? Or are going to? Or even WISH you were attending?