Today was my first time at doing a book reading. Just a few weeks ago, I had asked, “What is a book reading?” “Reading from a book,” said a friend. OK, I think that might be obvious but nobody wants to just sit and listen to someone drone on and on. So there must be more to it than that. After a search of the trusty internet and some reading about such appearances, I came up with a plan. I would introduce myself and give a little background on my book. Then I would read three short segments from the book followed by a little information about myself. I would finish off my appearance by reading three more segments and then answering questions. This turned out to be an outstanding plan.
I was expecting to sell books at my book reading so my first shock of the day was being told that it is against the policy of the principle owner of the senior living center I was to visit to solicit. OK, so how is this supposed to work if I can’t sell any books. I decided to take just a few books along and go with the flow. Since this was my first book reading, I could use the practice in a non-threatening setting anyway. The activities director was friendly and led me to the room where I was to make my appearance. I did set up my poster board display and laid out a few books. Soon, people began to wander in. By the time I started, 30 -40 people had assembled. Everything went better than I could have ever hoped. The people listened intently, identified with my story, and had many questions to ask at the end. I definitely had their attention. And there always seems to be one person in the crowd who has an uncanny connection to my past. This provided the “frosting on the cake” at the end. I had a really enjoyable time presenting my story and chatting with the senior citizens, a group I will, in the not too distant future, be a part of. And, I did end up selling three books too.