Friday, August 20, 2010

Stream of Consciousness (The Fair Day 3)

I accidentally left my notes at the fairgrounds, and I'm rather tired, so for today's post I'll just mention things as they pop into my head. Invariably I will leave stuff out. I can fill in the blanks on the next post.

48 pre-orders sold today! More than Wednesday and Tuesday's totals combined. Altogether, that's 87. Reaching my goal of 100 total shouldn't be a problem at all. In fact, I expect Saturday to be my best day. Why?
1. Everyone's off work, which means more traffic.
2. The best events are saved for Saturday.
3. In the first three days, many, many people opted to wait until Saturday to purchase a copy in the hopes that the books would arrive by then.
So my goal for Saturday is now 60 pre-orders.

I got some invitations from teachers and school librarians to speak at schools. I'm looking forward to those. Each of them bought at least one book and took signed posters to hang in their library/classroom too.

The girls from post... 1 (I think?) came back and brought another girl. "He's the author of that book. No really, watch this." And she grabbed an ARC and repeated the test that I passed on day 1. This time she kept going, but she held the book too far forward like a novice poker player. So I just read each chapter title when she turned to it. She didn't catch me until chapter six. :)

Those same girls came back later and asked for a dollar to buy a toy. I told them I'd give them a dollar if they took a stack of bookmarks and handed them out to people where the food tents are. (Matt has been busy with 4-H.) They were (predictably) very good at it, and enjoyed it so much that they came back for a second round, free! Not only that, but at least one sale resulted because of it.

The newspaper articles continue to be, by far, the biggest difference maker. Community support also continues to be a huge factor. (Thanks everyone!) In doing a little bit of experimenting, I found that some people passed my booth with nothing but glances up to seven times before walking up and placing a pre-order. I wonder though, if I'd stopped these people the first time by, would they have placed a pre-order? I think the steady build-up of curiosity was in my favor, kind of like how I talked about several small attacks being better than a siege in my last post.

I made friends with the kirby vacuum guy. He has pre-paid for my last ARC, to be given to him at the end of the fair on Saturday. His plan is that if I hit it big, the ARC will be worth a lot more money.

I'm fascinated by human age progression. I love seeing the people you see around town, how they've grown, and to imagine them at previous/future stages of their life. We grow pretty fast. Life's remarkably short.

I met a retired publishing professional today who graciously gave me a list of names I should contact. This could prove very valuable.

I also met quite a few more aspiring authors. One, my neighbor actually, said he started a book three weeks ago, but hit writer's block. Then he saw the article in the paper and thought, "If he can, why can't I?" He promptly wrote three more chapters in his book. This news made me feel good. :) We talked a bit about his story world, which sounds satisfactory detailed. And I can tell he has the required passion for his story.

There are a lot of nice people here. As an example, the mail lady for my neighborhood bought two pre-orders, and since she'd heard the books hadn't arrived yet, offered to go and pick them up right then, at about 7:00 pm! But the books are being delivered truck freight, so although it wouldn't have helped, the gesture is much appreciated.

Hmmm, I just realized Saturday is my last day to get pictures. I'll try to remember to grab the camera on the way out Saturday morning.


Araken said...

That's pretty neat!

Galadriel said...


Nahla of the Eastern Winds said...

pictures!!!! Please!!!!!
and all of this sounds soooo exciting!!!

Alisa said...

Great blog Jacob...did an actual lol at how many aspiring writers you met--myself included. (Guess I need to get out of the bat cave more and go find them.) Sounds like you're having a great time...I love that our community is showing so much support! Way to go!

Storyteller said...

Go Kirby! :D

This is wonderful news, Jacob! Keep it up!

Jacob R Parker said...

Thanks Araken and Storyteller!

Galadriel and Nahla: Your wish is my command. (See new post)

Alisa: Hey! You found me on the internet! I really enjoy meeting other writers of all kinds.