A very fine visit to the North Shelby Library
I can’t say enough good things about libraries. I had the great fortune of visiting one recently, the North Shelby Library, which lies just beyond Oak Mountain State Park. What a great experience. It was my first author talk and it was excellent. Librarian Michelyn Reid set it up and did a fantastic job of it.
We had New Orleans brass music and pralines and a lot of talking about Imogene and the boys. The best thing about writing to me is the writing. It’s never been about how people will react to the books or even if people will read the books. What I want to do is write a lot and on a regular basis. There are some tough days writing, when it’s difficult to put down half a page, but more often than not, I have good writing days when I write. And like Neil Gaimen said, “on the good writing days nothing else matters.”
However, many of the attendees at the North Shelby event had read Imogene in New Orleans, which to me is close to miraculous, especially when you consider that nearly two million books are published each year. The fact that anyone beyond my friends and family would read my book still surprises me. Of course I believe in the book, and I had the best time writing it and editing it and rewriting it. But still, I’m grateful that other folks are interested in the book.
I met some wonderful readers. I got to talk with Hannah Givens, who wrote a great review of the book (and let me guest post on her blog).
A lot of folks asked great questions, such as which characters from Imogene in New Orleans would I like to see in other books (besides Imogene and the boys and Goose, who will certainly be in more books, if all goes as planned). I personally would like to see Neil and Lena in another book. Those two amused me.
One or two attendees asked if any of the characters were based on real people. The answer is yes. I think a writer is telling a fiction if he or she says characters aren’t based on real people. But of course, some of the characters in my book are similar to real people. I have friends in New Orleans who I love and who introduced me to parts of the city I’d never seen or experienced, so I that’s why I put Imogene and the boys in that city.
And after the questions, I had the chance to talk to some great folks about their experiences visiting New Orleans and also what they thought about the book. And I got to sign a bunch of copies, which was new and wonderful.
And then I got to meet some of my favorite online peeps, Amber and Ginni, who I’ve been friends with for ages online.
Of course, I was nervous before the visit. Mark Twain said there are two types of public speakers, those who get nervous and those who lie. However, the event went well. As far as I can tell, no one fell asleep, so I count it as a success and I look forward to many more library visits.by