Monday, May 13, 2013
This is Bill (or One More Reason I Love Libraries)
This is Bill. I don't know Bill's last name. I don't know much about Bill at all other than he loves to read. He came to one of my book signings at Mudsock's (the independent book store in Fishers that is now closed). I don't remember which book it was. One of the early Josiah Wolfe novels. I think it might have been The Scorpion Trail. Bill told me that he had read the first Josiah Wolfe novel, The Rattlesnake Season, had checked it from the library, liked it, and saw in the newspaper that I was appearing at a signing. Bill has come to all of the signings I've held since that first one he attended. I've signed all seven of my published novels for him.
I heard Harlan Coben say once, "You build an audience one reader at a time." Bill reminds me of that every time I see him.
In these uncertain times in the publishing industry, it's easy to get caught up in the details in contracts, and the publishing wars with Amazon, and the declining advances, and all of that inside baseball stuff that none of us have any control over. But I bet readers like Bill don't care a lick about that stuff, about the business end of things. He's just waiting for the next book to come out...so he can he be entertained, so he can do what he loves to do...read.
I'm wrapping up launch week for The Gila Wars. I had fun, it was nice to get out and see people. But seeing Bill, and every one else that came out, reminded me of the great honor it is to have regular readers, to have an audience. Honestly, that's better than any award hanging on the wall, or any great review in the most read publication in the world, or any check that comes and goes in and out of the bank, or seeing your name on a bestseller list. Readers are the greatest award, the greatest reward for what writers do. People who live and breath publishing forget that all too often.
Thanks, Bill...and every one else out there waiting on my next book. Thanks for taking time out of your day, time out of your life, to spend time with my books. Rest assured, I'm hard at work on the next one.