My father was always a back room player in the Riverdale political scene. My youngest brother, John, has taken up his mantle. All of these Bronx politicos stop by his home to seek out his support. I never really understood why. Neither man ever showed any interest in running for office.
Whenever we do discuss these things, John loves to repeat my father’s mantra. “All politics is local.”
John and my father before him are the “local.” They help build grass root support for the Kings they ultimately help annoint.
But that bromide has many applications in life. And I have found that it applies to life as an author.
I cannot control what goes on outside of the circle of people I communicate with directly. My marketing reach only goes that far. But, like my father and brother with politics, I never miss an opportunity to make a connection with a new reader.
Yesterday I was blessed to be invited to share a meet and greet with members of the Berthoud Library Book Club. Now I’m not going to lie, if you stick me in a room full of mostly women, I am in heaven. And thank God, most of my readers are women. So yesterday was a blast.
For a few hours yesterday I got to meet with the nicest crew of readers, who politely listened to my crazy stories and even put up with my stripping off my shirt to show them my most recent Claire Tattoo. Yes, I am shameless. All I can say is that they are lucky it wasn’t a tramp stamp.
I loved the group members’ comments and questions about the book. While they were there to just discuss TWA, my presentation ventured into the realm of the remaining books in The Claire Trilogy and Finding Jimmy Moran. I also loved their common positive response in how I portrayed the locale and the locals. During the first session, Lisa and my two extraterrestrial neighbors, Everett and Michelle (wearing masks to disguise their true identities), came along for moral support, and were big hits with the readers, especially when Michelle told them her favorite line from the book: “Where the f*ck is Berthoud Colorado?”
And I made sure to emphasize that I love my new home here in Berthoud. And its citizens. Which is authentic. I do love it here.
The best thing was that, given there were approximately between thirty and forty people when you count both sessions, and every one of those people have read TWA (and now seem eager to read the rest of my books), I have established my grass roots base. I have hopefully won over the town folk. Because I know that if those people I get to meet come away from our encounter with the desire to continue to support me as a writer, then I have a winning ticket. And I can build on that solid base from there.
It seems to be working. As of this morning, TWA continues to float to the top of the Dark Humor category:
So thank you Sara Meeker, who moderated the event, and all of the staff at the Berthoud Public Library, for hosting the event, and all of you wonderful book club members that selected TWA as the January book for your club and made the time to come meet with me and listen to my madness for a few hours. I’m glad you all enjoyed TWA and hope you continue to enjoy the rest of the books.
And Meridith Fry, if you read this blog, thanks for the support – the Amazon review – and could you resend those photos that you took after the meeting. The Internet gremlins ate them all.
Well, now I must transform back to being a industrious citizen who must actually make a living.
But yesterday was magical.
Time to cuddle the kitty, make my rounds and yes, get back on the treadmill. My doctor’s note has expired.
And thank you, my fine, five readers, for your continuing support.
I may never meet you face to face, but I do feel the connection.
Now go out there and cruise over the hump.
And have a great day.
To Johnny, Helen, Tara, Kevin, Billy and Shannon, and the entire Carey Family, my thoughts were with you all yesterday. I’m sure Whitey was smiling when she pointed and said to the guy standing beside her, “Look Jesus, now that’s what you call a Riverdale send off!”
Johnny, word has it your eulogy knocked it out of the park.
Thanks Tom for kind words , I did my best with my sisters eulogy. Glad you had a successful day at the library
Thank YOU, Tom, for making the effort to come to the library and share the story behind the story! It was a real treat to meet you, Lisa, Everett and Michelle….putting faces and context to the book we read for this month’s book club.
Looking forward to reading the next books in the Claire trilogy….give Claire hugs and best of carrots from all of us at the Berthoud Community Library!