Small is too big to describe commerce related to my writing. Tiny is more accurate. Sales of Beyond the Gate are approaching 100. While surprised and disappointed at that low number, it’s easy for me to look on the bright side.
Almost every purchaser is someone i know, and there’s fun in that. Readers–some of you–call and email with responses and conversations which give me great pleasure. Book clubs give feedback and zooming with them is an easy possibility. Friends and family support by buying several copies (and then finding people to give them to probably!). Have i told this story before? On my 2011 book tour with Sunday by Sunday III, Read Between the Lynes, independent book store on the square in Woodstock IL, my birthplace, hosted a signing. When i arrived, they told me 8 people had already bought. “Oh my gosh; i wonder who they were,” i said. “Oh, we can tell you,” they said, and proceeded to tell me about the individuals. That was cool, never mind modest sales. Being able to sign every book i send, personalizing as appropriate, is another advantage i enjoy that Danielle Steele and Dean Koontz don’t have. Just sayin’…
I do regret this about being a small author: many friends and fans of Sunday by Sunday have been unresponsive to Beyond the Gate, including some who have expressed eagerness over the years to have the new book. This bothers me not from a sales point of view but because i fear the publication announcement has not reached them due to my small, unsophisticated marketing and promotion. I’ll be making some final efforts to reach those folks before i go incommunicado, and all i know to say at that point is, “Oh, well…” and i’m happy BTG will continue to be available through other commercial outlets if people search.
Another message will be coming your way today or tomorrow about winding down Create in Me, the writing enterprises i began in 2007. Winding down truly will be a joy, a new season with expanses of time to spend elsewhere, including at least the potential for more leisure. And winding down will be simple because of the smallness of my operation.
Here’s one more thought, which may seem a Gracie Allen style non sequitir, but stay with me. It’s scuppernong season at Jubilee! Puncture these thick-skinned grapes with your teeth and they burst into your mouth with more juicy flavor than is easy to imagine or describe. Crucial, though, is taking care to look at each one before plucking from the vine, for they ripen at different rates. Some varieties ripen to a rich bronze and define sweetness at that moment. But if plucked prematurely, they’re sour. I hope there aren’t too many of those in what i’ve said above, ha.
Thanks for reading/listening, friends. As you can tell, I just wanted to share.