Today was my first book signing (along with Damon Kaswell) in Eugene!
We were at Waldon Books in Eugene's Valley River Center, an indoor shopping mall. Stephen Stanley (WOTF XXI) and the only person to win both Writers and Illustrator of the Future showed up to support us. We sold seven books (which is good as it's more usual to sell none).
We had fun arranging the books into a Stonehenge Monument (yes, I sang, "Stonehenge! Where a man's a man and the children dance to the pipes of Pan!"). Damon put the books back into a stacked wedge shape; which I had rearranged into a stacked wedge shape that arced toward the front of our table. (And you know what, if you're actually doing something at a table instead of just sitting there with a pen in your hand, people will stop and give you a few more seconds of attention.)
The bookstore had us just outside the magnetic theft detector grids, so we were out in the mall. On one hand this was nice because we got to interact with the S.M.A.R.T (Start Making A Reader Today, a volunteer organization that reads books to young kids) table in the middle of the mall. On the other hand, this was too bad because it was so loud (and echoey) there was no way we would have been able to do any kind of reading.
Someone wanted (jokingly) to know if either Damon or I were L Ron Hubbard. We replied "No!" in chorus, and I added, "I'm much younger."
We also got a few "Eeuw, Science Fiction and Fantasy!" folks. Most of them were nice, and we tried to get them to tell us what they did read.
We got a quite a few averted eyes (which we were expecting), and by the end of our stint we were almost shouting out. "We're local authors! We won a contest! We're published in this anthology! Buy our book! Here, have a free bookmark!"
Somebody wanted to know where we got our ideas and kind of implied that we might get them when we're drunk or high. Stephen and Damon said something about imagination being the best high. I confessed my dependency on chemical stimulation and held up an empty Pepsi can (thank you, Tim Powers).
I was very glad that I visited the bookstore ahead of time because the staff already knew who I was and I had a good idea of what to expect (and what to bring). The bookstore staff were very nice.
We're scheduled for at least five more book signings before the year is out (see schedule at the right). Some are in Corvallis and Albany. If you're in town, come see us!