Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Pounding the Pavement in the Adirondacks Part 8

On Saturday, July 14th, the whole family got in the Envoy to head down to
Raquette Lake. It killed me to take the gas-loving vehicle but we couldn't fit in the hybrid with all the books, etc. We were heading down to the First Annual Festival of Life. This event was a benefit for North Country Life Flight, a non-profit air medical rescue program with headquarters at Adirondack Airport in Lake Clear. My friend, Jan Washburn, invited me and she organized the whole event. I was honored to be invited. We all loved watching the Life Flight helicopter land outside the school where the event took place.

We set our table up along with the other crafters. The event was from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and we did quite well. We sold 24 books to individuals and 10 to the Raquette Lake Navigation Company. They have daily and nightly cruises on the W. W. Durant (our protagonist is William Durant) and we could see their ship docked outside of our hotel room.

We were too tired to take a cruise but it looked like so much fun! Next time, we promised ourselves.

The next day we were off to Inlet for our next signing. We had a fantastic breakfast at the Tamarack Cafe & Movie House. Woof, we ate too much. Jim had the Lumberjack special and it was a plate FULL of heart-stopping goodies, like buscuits and gravy and sausage and toast and eggs and woof! I had an egg sandwich and we had to take a walk after that before the signing. Our signing in Inlet was at the Adirondack Reader, right on the main road. It was scheduled from 1 p.m until 3 p.m. We set up our groovy display a bit early. The father of the owner of Adirondack Reader, Reggie, took our picture. They were so nice and funny and easy to be with.

Yup, that's my little baby. Sigh. We only sold 7 books but we have been invited to Reggie's Author's fair in September so it's cool. We also gave out a lot of bookmarks so all's well that end's well. We were pretty tired on the drive back home and the kids fell asleep in the back. I fell asleep on the couch that night, exhausted. It was a good weekend!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Brodarts, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Midwest Book Review

I received a notice from Brodart which says "Titles With NYP Status To Be Checked" and my book was listed. It clearly states that


Thanks, I need that? What the heck is "NYP Status"? Anyway, they are a library fulfillment service so I guess it's good they're checking on things. Does this mean libraries are trying to order the book? I don't know but that would be pretty cool.

I also received a letter from my distributor, North Country Books which says that Eric Burger, Barnes and Noble's regional buyer for the northeast, has requested I send him sample copies of my new publications as they become available. Okey dokey, but what the heck happened to the two copies I already sent in to Barnes and Noble? So I sent my newest buddy, Eric, two more copies. At least the book now shows as in stock. Where did those other two copies go? Did they just fly away? Hmmm.

Now for the biggest, best news of all! Midwest Book Review has given our book a 5 out of 5 star review! Here it is:

"Written by mother of two Rebecca Leonard and featuring numerous black-and-white computer-generated illustrations by her son Nick Leonard, Adirondack Nightmare: A Spooky Tale in the North Country is a Halloween adventure novel for young people new to chapter books. Enhanced with tasty original Adirondack recipes like "John and Mary's Best Michigan Sauce Recipe Ever" and "Caramel and Chocolate Covered Candied Apple Recipe", Adirondack Nightmare is goosebump-inducing treat from cover to cover. A great holiday mood-setting story for reading aloud chapter by chapter or allowing novice readers to immerse themselves in the spine-chilling joy of words."

Can you believe it? I was so happy I didn't know what to do. They posted it on Amazon, too, which really helps.

Well, time to get ready for our two signings this weekend. We need to prep a lot of books! Take care, thanks for reading.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Sunscreen - Why I Will Never Quit

As I was working on our "$100 cash to one of the first 100 people who buy our book" promo yesterday, I became discouraged. Again. The NCCCA Dream Picnic book signing and presentation on June 30th was a bust. I put it in all the calendar of events, 1100 fliers to 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students at local elementary schools, posters all over the place. Colleen, the DEC Coordinator and Educational Programs Director was there and brought a neighbor, a very nice young girl. Colleen also sent some fliers to some students but to no avail.

See, what happened on the same day was a ceremony for a fallen soldier. Hundreds of people attended and I would have, too, if it weren't for the commitment we made. It was a very sobering and sad day for Plattsburgh.

We did sell seven books, five of them were to a postal employee who bought three initially then came back for two more! So, it was worth it. Colleen and I also talked about hosting a winter "Read Around The Campfire" book reading. Our book is a perfect readaloud around the campfire so I think it'll work out well.

Back to the beginning of the blog and my work on our "$100 cash to one of the first 100 people who buy our book". I decided to fax or mail a flier announcing the promotion to each store which carries our book. Haven't heard anything from one of them. Are they in the trash or being displayed? Hmmm. Becoming discouraged. Time to take action.

I played my favorite song, Everybody is Free aka The Sunscreen Song, by Baz Luhrmann. I played it over and over again. I cried. Then I wrote a letter to the editor of our local paper which I've been meaning to write. Then I went to camp. My haven. I'm ok. I'll never quit. I'm simply not a quitter. I'm just human.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Pounding The Pavement in the Adirondacks Part 7

I took Patty's advice and stopped at The Lake Store in Indian Lake. It's very close to Sabael, where Patty's Squaw Brook Motel is. Sure enough, Eris was nice enough to bring in six copies of the book. What a great way to start the day!

I went into Indian Lake and saw a store called Gramma's Things on Big Brook Road. The owner, Jean Turner, was a bit hesitant to bring in the book so we made a deal. I promised to not hit any other stores in Indian Lake if she took a few copies. It makes sense as it's a fairly small town. Sure enough, she took in four copies. She is so talented with quilting. It was hard to leave without buying something.

Time to move on to Raquette Lake, which is where the book takes place. I had some great tips from my friend, Jan, so I started with the Raquette Lake Supply Co. right on Main Street. Her sister, Theresa, works there. I went into the office and she greeted me as if I were family! She also brought in twelve copies of the book. Her store is amazing as there is a little bit, no a lot of, everything. I mean everything and then some.

OK, Patty's store isn't quite that big but it felt like it at the time. I also stopped at the Raquette Lake Free Library and Carolynn, the director, brought in two copies. I walked over to the Raquette Lake Navigation Company and that place is so cool! They have a caboose gift shop and urge people to "Climb Aboard the W.W. Durant", a wonderful ship which tours Raquette Lake. The protagonist in my book is William Durant. No one was there so I had to move on. I'd love to do that tour someday.

Next stop was Blue Mountain Lake and I was more than happy to see they already had the book in stock at the Adirondack Museum. I'm not much of a museum fan but this place is more than a museum. It's an entire day of fun and exploration. I love it.

On to Inlet and the Inlet Department Store. They were so psyched when they saw the book it made me blush! The owner said that the day before a tourist was in looking for a book just like it to read around a campfire. That's exactly what this book is good for. Twelve more copies sold!

I was getting pretty tired and hot at this point but I was determined to make it to Old Forge. I stopped at the Adirondack Reader bookstore on Main Street in the center of Inlet. The owner was so excited I couldn't believe it. She bought fifty (yes, 50) copies on the spot, signed us up for a book signing and invited me to her upcoming author's fair! I hit the big time!!

OK, OK, I stopped at the local wine store and bought a bottle of wine to celebrate. Sheesh, can't get away with anything on this blog. On to Old Forge. I should have stopped when the going was good but I was determined. And exhausted. I went to the Old Forge Hardware Bookstore and they reluctantly brought in ten copies. I won't go into it. I'm grateful to them for bringing the book in and I was simply too tired to sell any more books.

Not a bad day.