My display is set up, extra books hidden beneath the table, and a candy dish with treats sits on the corner of the table. With excitement building I await the doors to open. Visions of throngs of people storming through the doors to get to my book signing table flash through my mind. (I think I was delusional this time) Holding several bookmarks in my hands, my feet planted solidly on the floor, and a smile ready and willing to spread across my face, I watch as the manager unlocks the doors.
Five minutes pass. Ten minutes pass. Thirty minutes pass and one person walks through the door. The mailman! I wandered close by looking at other books on the racks while keeping an eye on the door. Tired and a little discouraged I sit at my table twiddling my fingers under the table. The manager approaches me and apologizes, “Tuesdays are slow days. Maybe next time we’ll do it on Saturday.”
A couple walks in and sees me. The woman approaches and the man wanders off. That readied smile appears and she and I chat a minute, she picks up my book and reads the back, then lays it back on the table. She takes a piece of candy and turns to join her husband.
“Would you like a bookmark?” I quickly ask holding a book mark out to her before she gets away. She thanks me and takes the book mark and wanders off to join her man. By now other people have entered the store but they give me a quick glance and head for the books in the back of the store.
A few will stop, ask if they can have a piece of candy, take a book mark, and wander off giving my books a mere glance. The first lady that stopped returns. “I think I will buy your book. Would you sign it for me?”
Four hours in a bookstore and I sold one book, emptied the candy dish, and gave away several bookmarks and business cards. It’s not always cracked up to be what we have visions of it being.
Regardless of whether a book/s are sold or not, and there will be times when 0 are sold, thank the manager for the opportunity he/she has given you to sell your books, and if possible schedule another date for another signing event with the store.
Don’t be discouraged – better days are coming.