Sunday, October 15, 2006

On The Road Again

Finally, access to the Internet, but alas, cannot get into my email until I get home … I shall start at the beginning of this journey …

Last Wednesday morning early … breakfast at Panera on the run! On the way to the Southern Festival of Books in Memphis, Tennessee I closed my eyes. Leaving North Carolina I felt like Loretta Lynn … there she was, in the back seat of the ’53 Chevy, Doolittle is driving in the front, her arms are around Doolittle’s neck, kissing his cheek … “You want me to look for the radio towers, Doo?”

Mike I hit the road again, but my eyes were not searching for radio towers … we were following the route for bookstores!

I had hoped to blog from the road, but our little laptop is not built for wireless … and these days that’s about all the hotels have available. So not only could I not blog, there was no checking email either. The Sleep Inns on our route don’t have business centers in the lobby … and though we attempted to slip into other hotels and use their computers, they’ve caught on. Nowadays you have to use special codes/room keys/whatever … But I decided to “blog” on my computer’s Word program, then convert it to my real blog when I get access to the Internet … “There’s more than one way to skin a rabbit!” (Sorry, Dena, it’ an old saying from way-back.)

Productive and enlightening, public relations work is something every author needs to master. It’s all part of selling your work to the masses …. that integral piece of the puzzle in building your platform, making friends with your “fans,” finding your way in the literary jungle. And it starts with … drumroll …

Behold, The bookseller!

They may need you, but believe me, you need them!

Let’s put the big boys aside for a moment. Barnes & Noble, Borders, Walden Books, Booksamillion, Joseph Beth, etc. and let’s concentrate on the little dudes. The independents. “The Shop Around The Corner.” Those struggling store owners that spend literally 60 to 80 hours a week … making their stores work … hoping to break even … wanting to succeed … all while competing with the big boys. Authors, take note. It’s the independents that hold your hand, and if they love your work, THEY know how to get behind an author and sell their books.

We all want to have our books showcased at the front door by the big boys, there’s no doubt about that. But the independents work just as hard, maybe harder. Little independent store owners work round the clock and they also deserThey ve to be noticed—maybe more so.

So support your local independent bookseller. They don’t run their stores on “New York City Corporate Policies” … they run their stores with their hearts.

More tomorrow on our “blitz across the South!”

Blessings to you and yours.

1 comment:

Dena said...

Hi Pam,

Sorry to post this here, but wanted to let you know I've forwarded 2 e-mails to you from a woman at Forward magazine who seems to very much want to talk to you. Since you can't get to your e-mail, if you want to call me I'll give you the info over the phone.

Say hi to those indie booksellers for me--and find out if they have cats! =)