“You’re a virgin,” he whispered into the darkness, just loudly enough for her to hear.
“Don’t remind me,” she retorted in a sour tone, belatedly remembering to close her mouth after speaking.
“There is no shame in that.”
“Says you,” she sighed with envy. How anything so utterly masculine and gorgeous could entertain an interest in her was bewildering. Of course, having five overprotective brothers and her father around hadn’t exactly encouraged romantic relationships. Hence, the cabin. Dad and her brothers trusted her ability to take care of herself more in relative isolation than if she were plopped in the midst of a busy city teeming with the dregs of humanity—or so they assumed.
“It means you respect yourself,” he whispered, pride and possessiveness thrumming through every syllable of his charming, foreign accent. “It means you did not not waste yourself on an unworthy male.”
“And you’re worthy, I suppose?” Sarcasm dripped from her words.
“More than you know,” he answered as though stating mundane fact. The utter lack of pride puzzled her. “But you will understand.”
She sighed and shut the bedroom door.
Arrogant man thinks he can have me at the crook of his little finger, just because he looks like God’s gift to women. Her own grouchiness surprised her. Corinne attributed it to PMS and a history of watching her own handsome brothers reel in woman after woman with seemingly no effort at all. The frequency with which women threw themselves at her brothers disgusted and exasperated her, as did the cocky pleasure they took in taking advantage of what those women offered.
“They’ll settle down when they find the right girls,” her mother had tried to reassure her. “Your father was the same way.”
“Ugh,” she muttered and climbed back into bed.
Uberon paid no mind to the closed door and his mate’s displeased reaction to his certainty that she would give herself to him, body, mind, heart, and soul. Fate exerted an influence nothing could escape. One might dodge fate for a limited time, but not forever.
That didn't go well.
It was embarrassing, really. Mother Stewart's Brewing Co., which is usually hopping on Saturday afternoons, had maybe half their usual crowd and only a small fraction of that ventured into the brewing room to check out the book fair. Most people with whom I spoke expressed surprise: "I had no idea this was going on!"
How utterly discouraging. Through the diligence of my publicist, Personalize Marketing Inc., we posted blogs to promote the individual authors as well as the event as a whole. Tweets and Facebook posts went out regularly--frequently. I cannot fault her efforts at all: as always, she went above and beyond the call of duty to try to make this endeavor a success. Participating authors were urged to spread the word throughout their social networks ... and some did. I had fliers printed up and handed them out. I gave more fliers to the brewery three weeks and then one week in advance to distribute to their customers. I gave fliers to other vendors to distribute to their customers.
All for naught, it seems like.
My publicist and her manager even came to the event, one from Illinois and the other from New Jersey. I feel as though they wasted their time, fuel, and money.
How utterly disappointing. Most of the authors left early. I couldn't blame them.
One author complained of insufficient marketing. Apparently, he expected signage throughout the city promoting the event. Since author fees were only $30 to participate--a rate affordable for indie authors who usually see less than $1,000 in royalties per year--that doesn't leave much for marketing. I certainly don't make a profit from this.
I even ushered people to check out the other authors: "I don't have horror/mystery/true crime/biography/etc., but we have authors here who do. I'm sure you'll find something that piques your interest!" Did anyone else refer potential customers to other authors?
So, what did we have going against us besides an apparent lack of market penetration and public interest? We had:
I'm not happy. I asked the other 20 participating authors for their feedback and asked for suggestions to help improve future events. Four responded. My suggestion to reduce the frequency of the events from two to one per year met with expressed preferences to remain at two per year. Three of those who responded suggested different months, with spring and autumn being preferred to winter and summer. (Granted, weather in February in southwest Ohio is predictably nasty.) I received no other suggestions: they liked the venue, complimented me on it being well-organized, and were generally supportive.
So ... what shall we do? I'm going to have to contact Mother Stewart's to see what they've got scheduled in April or May, making sure to avoid Easter, Mother's Day, graduations, proms, and Memorial Day. OK, we can't avoid all the graduation and proms. At least Springfield's Winter Market will end in early April, so perhaps we can snag a Saturday rather than a Sunday. (Saturdays do tend to be busier.) And I'll inquire about late September, October, and early November. We want to piggyback on the gift-giving seasons when brewery patronage is good, too. After all, Mother Stewart's does this in the hope that the book fair will draw extra customers for them, too.
Yes, I'm belly-aching on a bucket of sour grapes. I'll continue to whine, because I don't get over large disappointments like this so easily.
Eventually, yes, I will get over this--probably about the time I start planning the next event.
If you've been to a wonderful author/book expo, what went right? What went wrong? Share your experiences, because I need to learn from them. My own experiences organizing and attending these events isn't encouraging.
In the meantime, I've got paid work to do and stories to write. Catch ya later.
Research links use of salt to adult onset diabetes by Surender Neravetla, M.D.
On August 08, 2017
The following was published in Springfield News-Sun on June 30, 2017:
Shockingly bad news is buried in the recent article in the New York Times on salt which most people who contacted me interpreted to mean that they don’t have to watch salt in their diet.
Closer review of the article reveals a link between table salt and diabetes, a clue I have been searching for at least a decade. I have been concerned about the close association between high blood pressure and adult onset diabetes (type II diabetes). I have noticed that diabetes often develops in someone a few years after the diagnosis of high blood pressure. Yes indeed, diabetes, which affects the human body from head to toe and every organ system in between and is one of the most disabling and deadly diseases, can now be tied to our salt habit.
Read the article at:
Dr. Surender Neravetla, M.D. was recently at the Springfield OH Book Fair hosted by Hen House Publishing at Mother Stewart's Brewing
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