My son came to me the other day (he’s fourteen), and asked for a signed copy of The Redemption of Erâth. The interesting part is that it isn’t for him, or even for a friend – it’s for a friend’s friend.
One of his best friends is a huge fan of fantasy, including Harry Potter and others, and for her birthday one year we gave her a copy of the first Redemption of Erâth book, Consolation. Apparently she liked it, because she wants to give a signed copy to one of her friends for Christmas.
It’s kind of neat.
I know perfectly well I’m not famous, well-known, or even known at all; fewer than a hundred people have bought my book, and probably fewer still have actually read it (so many people buy things they don’t read). But when someone recognizes you for your efforts, however small the recognition, it feels good.
I was in my local coffee shop the other day as I often am, and as I’m waiting in line the owner offhandedly comments that I’m on the ‘wall of fame’. I wasn’t sure what he meant until he pointed to the door, where, lo and behold, my picture is on the wall, amongst half a dozen others! I’ve done exactly one book signing there with about three people in attendance, but they still felt it was enough to recognize me on the wall of the shop.
That felt great.
I was in the local paper the other month for that book signing; a reporter happened to be picking up his own coffee the day I was there, and sat down to ask me a few questions. The book signing and article are about my young adult book, 22 Scars, but in some ways that’s even better, because that’s my ‘serious’ work.
The point is, it’s interesting to consider who might know you, and what they might think. Once your work is out there, you can’t take it back – people know you and your writing, even if it’s only a very few people. And to think that those people enjoyed my work enough to want to share it with others – whether via a gift, or by recognizing me on a wall – is a feeling that hits deep. It really feels meaningful, because of course that’s why I started writing in the first place – to touch people’s lives.
So who knows – maybe one day I’ll be signing books all over the place! More likely not, but still – time to work on my signature!