Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Sales pitch

This past weekend marked the unofficial promotional kickoff for Lake Erie Stories.

Saturday was the first stop; an afternoon at the Ontario Genealogical Society conference in London. Dundurn had a booth set up there, and it was a tough room full of serious historians, to be sure. Still, the book got a warm reception, and I got to road-test my pitch, which essentially boils down to: "Hi. I'm here signing my new book. It's my first one."

A bunch of green balloons were placed on the table, indicating that an author was indeed present. Another factor that worked in my favour was the booth's location. We were next to the door leading to the washroom, which allowed me to periodically lunge at startled passersby.

In the end, it went well. I personally moved around six books, some to people who didn't know much at all about Lake Erie.

From there it was on to a much easier event at my folks' place on the beaches of Point Pelee. It was a stellar day on Sunday, the lake was sparkling in that tropical way that only Erie can, and kind people popped in from all over the neighbourhood. (Some family members even chipped in this fancy Lake Erie Stories labelled wine. Pelee Island, no less.)

An astounding number of people came with their own copies, which was really touching. Still, I managed to sell over twenty more as my tired wrist (and brain) strained to come up with unique messages to write in each book. Some people were even organized enough to come with their own messages scratched on little pieces of paper, which was unbelievably helpful.

So we are officially off and running. Next stop, BookExpo in Toronto on
June 15 (click here for more on that) and the Toronto launch for the book at the Victory Cafe in the Annex neighbourhood on the 26th. And there will be much more to come, I'm sure.

Phew.

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