So I got a phone call from the sales guy at Pelican Press today. He wanted to know if I’d “given any thought to the launch of F is for Fire Fighting?”

My response was, “Uh…”

To tell you the truth, I don’t think much about stuff like that. I know I should, but…I don’t think I’ve ever done anything for a book launch before. Well, unless you count the party we threw last spring when I had three books come out at once. But that was a party! We invited all our friends and had food and wine…it was a celebration, not a book signing. I’ve never had an actual “event” anywhere…nothing that you’d call a “launch.”

I’m not sure I’ve ever gotten a call like that from the sales person at any of my other publishers. These people are aggressive! That’s good, I guess. We talked about things we could do to promote F is for Fire Fighting, and I don’t think I even sounded too stupid. I may have even fooled him into thinking I’m the kind of person who is very good at getting out there and promoting my book…but that’s because my father-in-law is a retired fire marshall and his brothers are fire fighters and well, this book will sort of sell itself in the Twin Cities. (And my mother-in-law will be a HUGE promoter for me!)

I know that most fire departments have “family day” where they invite the public in for tours, activities, cake etc. (The sales guy didn’t know that.) So I was thinking I could do a presentation/signing at some of those events. (The sales guy LIKED that idea!) Actually, this appeals to me much more than sitting in the basement of Prairie Lights, not knowing if anyone will show up for my “launch.” But it sounds like Mr. Sales Guy wants to do both! He’s going to call up Prairie Lights for me TODAY and try and set something up. He’s also going to try and set something up at Barnes & Noble both here and in Cedar Rapids.

Wouldn’t you think anyone who wants to see me would come to Prairie Lights? They’re not going to come to Barnes & Noble, too, are they? (See how bad I am at this???)


4 thoughts on “Uh…

  • January 19, 2007 at 3:33 am

    I love the fire station idea!

    I don’t know. I’ll bet you get people at Prairie Lights and B/N. Prairie Lights is downtown, right? Where’s the Barnes and Nobel? I’ll just bet they have different audiences. Is it downtown too? I hated going downtown when I lived there. Avoided it all costs. I can’t be the only one…can I?

    • January 21, 2007 at 9:58 pm

      B&N is in Coralville…right off I-80. Yeah…MAYBE it’s a different audience…it just seems like this is a small enough community that one signing anywhere in town is enough.

      BTW, downtown’s not so bad in the summer. Or during winter/spring break. 🙂

  • January 19, 2007 at 2:00 pm

    In Portland, at least, people will go to different bookstores and it won’t canabalize from the others if there is some geographic separation. In our case, people don’t like to cross the river. It’s like a psychological barrier.

    • January 21, 2007 at 10:01 pm

      That’s like Minneapolis/St. Paul…people don’t cross the river there, either. But the Iowa City/Coralville area is MUCH smaller that Portland or the Twin Cities…people go between both areas without giving it any thought (the mall is in Coralville and the cool stores are in I.C.)


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