November 8, 2015
Taking a look at the calendar, I noticed that the next couple of months will call frequently on my woefully lacking marketing skills. Oh, joy. Promotion. What’s that rising up within? Heartburn? Acid reflux? Incipient panic?
Some of us prefer to remain unnoticed, to blend, chameleon-like, in the crowd. Deliberately drawing multiple pairs of eyeballs to our existence can be a trifle uncomfortable. But, that’s the gig. I knew it was part of the deal when I signed up.
The festivities commence November 20, with Orycon. For the third year running, Orycon has invited me as a guest and panelist. I suppose that means I haven’t screwed up egregiously. Yet. I’ll post the names and times of my panels closer to the date. Orycon is fun. And I share the panels with other writers, so there’s a sort of pro rata distribution of eyeballs. The attention is not on me alone.
My first book signing for Under Strange Suns is December 5, at Jan’s Paperbacks in Aloha, Oregon. I’m aquiver with anticipation of sitting behind a table facing the front door, watching as each customer walks in while trying to avoid eye contact with the author and his stack of unsold books. Actually, the signing at Jan’s for Reunion turned out well. I enjoyed it, and the store seems to have sold enough to make it worthwhile having me back for another go.
December 15 is the official release date for Under Strange Suns. It is also the date I’ll sit staring into a webcam while Simon Rose interviews me for his Fantasy Fiction Focus webcast. See, with e-mail interviews, I have the chance to carefully consider the question and prepare what I hope is a clever response. A response, at least, in the form of a complete sentence, sans “ums” and “likes” and other filler words and phatic expressions. A live interview, however, removes that safety net. And as an extemporaneous speaker, I’m no Flying Wallenda. Still, it should be interesting. Simon Rose is an engaging interviewer, and skilled at tossing his guests life preservers if they begin flailing about. You should check out some of his interviews on his Youtube channel, they are informative and entertaining.
December 16 brings another signing, this one at the Things From Another World store in Portland. Last year the store provided free beer. So I had that going for me. I’m much less concerned by the eyeballs after a beer or two.
There you have it. If you can attend any of the live events, come up and say hello.