This phrase, often used by a family member of mine, is an apt description of my signing at BookExpo here in Toronto last Sunday.
For those who are unfamiliar, BookExpo is an annual industry trade show. It's open to those in the publishing biz, as well as librarians, booksellers of both the chain and independent varieties, educators, and pretty well anyone else who derives at least part of their living from the making, selling, or reading of books. The idea is for publishers to set out their latest wares, for authors to show up and sign, and for general buzz to be created. Most attendees go home with a bagload of free books, and the hope is that they'll order more to display in their various shops.
So imagine my surprise when I rolled up to the Dundurn booth for my 11:30 a.m. signing last Sunday, coffee in hand, to find, of all things, a small lineup for Lake Erie Stories. At first I thought the crowd was waiting on another author. One with, I dunno, a body of work. But alas, no. The publicist informed me that they were indeed there for me. And so we got down to business.
In less than a half-hour, we blew through all the books we had available (I'm going to say around 25 copies), and even had to turn a few people away at the end. And they were an informed bunch; most had actually sought out the book, and made sure they were there in time to get a copy. (One bookseller was planning a special display in her southern Ontario store. Two librarians were going to give it away as a prize for a fundraising drive.)
It was a great sign, not only for the future of one little book, but for the appetite that clearly exists out there for regional histories like this one.
Next stop, the Victory Cafe on June 26 for the Toronto launch. And then, well, who knows?