On Tuesday night I participated in my very first author event.
I know – exciting, right? It was very exciting – I was invited by a local library to do a reading with their teen reading group, as well as sell signed copies of my book afterwards, so it was a wonderful opportunity.
And I was incredibly nervous. It’s one thing to read your words back to yourself within the privacy of your study (spare bedroom), and quite another to declaim them in front of an audience. However, this library had already been incredibly supportive of my work, purchasing several copies of my book for their shelves as well as hosting me on a previous evening to talk about being a writer. So I couldn’t say no, nor did I want to – opportunities like this can’t be passed up when you’re self-published.
I arrived early, was welcomed with tea and biscuits and warm conversation as I gathered my nerves and prepared to speak. They had done a lovely display in the YA section:
This was quite thrilling and scary at the same time. Although mostly thrilling. To see my book on the shelves of an actual library was something I’d only previously dreamed of. Once again I thanked my lucky stars for the ability to publish through Createspace, without which this wouldn’t have been possible.
And then it was time. I sat down with the group and spoke a little about myself, then steeled myself to read. As we were in a library, I had decided to read a section where Alma, my heroine, enters the Great Library of Ambeth for the first time. As I read I could feel my cheeks burning, as red as the jacket I’d chosen to wear. But the group was silent. They listened. And after I finished they asked me many questions, the hour slipping by so quickly. I sold a few copies, signed them and left, feeling so pleased to have had this support.
I have always loved libraries, which is why I put one in Ambeth. There is something about a roomful of books waiting to be explored and read that is fascinating to me. I introduced my daughter to them from an early age, and she too loves to read, spending time perusing the shelves and emerging with an armful of books. There have been some blogs recently about supporting our local libraries and it’s something I wholeheartedly endorse – they are a tradition as old as the written word and one well worth preserving. And I am extremely grateful to have had their support in my first publishing endeavour.
Thanks for reading xx