Tomorrow is a big day by Emily Winslow

Well, this is it. Tomorrow by first novel is officially out and about, meeting strangers in bookstores and going home with them. (I hope!)

To help it along, I’m spending the entire month of June on the road. In a previous post, I mentioned my public bookstore events. I have seven of those. And also, 17 private events: book clubs, lunches, parties, talks, a writing conference and two local TV gigs. That’s 24 events in 10 states in 35 days. I might be crazy.

I have all the usual worries: Will I pack everything? Will our cat like our housesitter? Will the kids adjust to the time difference or will they wake me up for breakfast in the middle of the night?

There are two worries YOU can help me with:

1) What on earth should I sign besides my name? Don’t authors usually sign with a phrase or something? It needs to be short, but significant. Friendly, but not intimate. Help! I need ideas.

2) What should I do if I forget someone’s name at a signing?? I have trouble with faces at the best of times. Without big cues like singular hair color or an unusual outfit, I’m at sea. Waitstaff in uniforms confound me. War movies are, as far as I can tell, about one guy, cloned. I’ll be seeing lots of old friends, people I truly care about. But I fear I will blank, especially because they will be out of context. I can try “To whom shall I make this out?” (as if it might be a gift for their mother or something)–but then they might say “ME!” Or I could ask how to spell it. “B-r-a-d” they might answer, giving me a funny look. Any advice?

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Emily Winslow

9 thoughts on “Tomorrow is a big day by Emily Winslow

  1. For your signings, put a notebook out so they can JOIN a mailing list. Have them do this before you sign their book so you have their correct spelling in front of you AND you will have a great start to a mailing list for future promos. Good luck.

  2. Roll with it. You’re going to knock them dead.

    It sort of sounded like you’re meeting strangers and going home with them.

    I’m not judging, just sayin…

    g.

  3. Take a deep breath, take your time to speak, look around you at everyone gathered and enjoy. They are there for you — they want to support you and the book — take that moment to feel the love — it will give you the push you need to go on. Don’t worry about remembering names — people will expect you to be human — even if publishing a book seems like a superhuman feat!

  4. Definitely ask about spellings, even if you think you know the name! I had the same worry but people really do understand and won’t be offended (I asked one guy his name, and he said, “Josh.” I quickly recovered and said, “OH, I wasn’t sure if you wanted it made out to Josh or Joshua.” Not sure I fooled him, though!)
    Have a great launch day. I’m so excited for you!

  5. Major congratulations, Emily! Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. I have all those same concerns each time I sign, but it works out. The local sigings are the hardest. Ask them to spell their names, even if you think you know them. As I have learned there is more than one way to spell Judy and Sarah and Patty . . . .

  6. Big huge congrats to you!

    I’ve been to author signings lots of times where the author asks what name she should use. I always assumed it’s because people often give signed books as gifts, so I don’t think anyone would bat an eyelash if you did it (even if your reason was because you’d forgotten the name!)

    Good luck to you!
    Tawna

  7. Greg, my *book* is meeting strangers and going home with them 😉

    Tonya, that’s a great idea about the notebook!

    Tawna–Oooh, I like your phrasing. “What name should I use?” demands a name as an answer, whereas my “To whom shall I make this out?” could be answered with the unhelpful “ME!”

    Sarah–Well, I’m guessing Josh forgave you 🙂

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