Yesterday, I blogged about my surprise at having a photographer come up to me at the Texas Book Festival and thank me for blogging about his book - and how this reminded me that we bloggers are not alone.
Today, I’ll tell you about something else that happened at the Festival, although not at the Austin Museum of Art.
On Saturday, the first day of the Festival, I arrived about 8:30 a.m. The museum wasn’t expecting me until about 9:30, so I decided I had time to walk two blocks and grab a coffee from Starbucks. They weren’t open. So I thought I’d run to the Exhibitors’ tents and see if I could catch some friends to yell “hi” at them before I headed to AMOA (once I’m there, I’m there for the day). I headed that way, but didn’t get far before I got a call that my big posters showing the line-up at AMOA for the two days needed to be picked up since no one was available to get them at the museum. I u-turned, met the staff member trying to deliver them, carted them to my car and locked them in the trunk, then u-turned and headed back, fast-walking to the Exhibitors’ tents (stopping along the way at the Exhibitors’ hospitality tent to grab a cup of free coffee). Fast-walked through the first tent of publishers, stopping briefly to look at TSTC Publishing’s table. No one was there manning it yet, but it was all set up, including …. My book, Automotive Technicians, right up front. Yay!! Woo-woo.
Zipped through the next tent - more publishers - then in the third tent, I found the Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas booth. Dave Ciambrone and Sylvia Dickey Smith were both there. We yakked and I got to see their books on display, then I headed to the next tent and ran into Russ Hall at his publisher’s table (and his many, many books on display). We talked way too long, so I hugged good-bye, then began backtracking. Paused at the SinC HoT booth again. Joan Upton Hall was there and I gave her a running hug.
Zipped into my publisher’s tent and found Mark there. Before I could get to the table, my phone was ringing again. Another delivery; told them I’d be walking down Congress headed their way. Hugged Mark. He asked if I noticed my book. I told him, yes, and picked it up. He said, not that one, and pointed to the book next to it.
There sat, propped up on display, the next one in the TechCareers series - Avionics. Bright blue cover, and I’d missed it! So, I hereby officially announce that Avionics is not only available but has an ISBN. Woo-woo.
Mark whipped out a copy and gave it to me, then I hurried off to meet the staff with more supplies, then raced off to the museum.
All that power walking started out as a trip to get a Starbucks. I ended up with about half of a small cup of coffee (I threw it away ‘cause I was spilling more of it than I was drinking), a chance to hug friends, and a copy of my latest book. Not a bad way to start the Festival.
And, what does this tell you, other than that I will dance around on a broken toe at the sight of my name on a book cover? If you’re an aspiring author, it tells you that the Texas Book Festival (and probably the Festival in your state), can be a good place to introduce yourself to small publishers. The TBF doesn’t have agents, that I know of, but there are small and regional publishers who set up their booths and stand around waiting for buyers …and aspiring authors to come talk to them. And it’s free. It costs you nothing to walk through the tents, buck up your nerve and introduce yourself.
6 months ago