This has been mentioned on this blog before—and will certainly be mentioned again, I'm sure—but I am one of those authors who's really not all that comfortable being an author in public. (Or just being in public in general, truth be told.)
I pretty much live in fear of being asked about my book. Or hearing that someone is reading my book. Or hearing that someone has read my book and now can't wait to talk to me about said book.
But when these things happen (which they occasionally do), I try to act like a somewhat normal human being capable of putting words into sentence doing (Name! That! Reference!) and, occasionally, I am somewhat successful.
But most of the time, I am just a big, blithering idiot who probably leaves every reader wondering how it is I managed to write a book at all.
Anyway, I recently had a pair of reader interactions I thought I would share with you. To my credit, I neither ran away nor hid under any tables at any point during these experiences.
—A gentleman—in front of a group, mind you—provided a passionate (and mostly accurate) recap of Effigy's plot—being sure to hit all of the darkest plot points, of course—during which I imagine I turned about a million shades of red. Upon finishing, this gentleman turned to me and asked, "How did such a sweet, quiet, little thing like you write such a dark book?" To which I responded, "If you think that book was dark, you really shouldn't read its sequel." (Also, it should be noted that I am not, in any way, shape, or form, a sweet, quiet, little thing.)
—A reader told me that she recently acquired a copy of Effigy and was really enjoying it. In fact, she was finding it rather difficult to put it down, and even read until 3am one night, because she didn't want to stop reading. Which, for me and all of my gross dysfunction, is just the highest compliment. As I wrote in a blog post a few years back, one of my goals was to write a book that make people (or person, as the case may be) want to stay up all night to read. So I am incredibly humbled that she feels that way about my book, and took the time to tell me so. Even though I was my usual social doofus self when she did.
Potential Reader: I should really read your book.
Me: Oh, don't. It's terrible.
Potential Reader: Huh?
—And this conversation:
—Potential Reader: What's your book about?
—Me: Uh, well...there's this girl, and she's trying to....you know, not die.
—Potential Reader: Well...that's a good goal to have.
I'll keep working on that 'normal human being' thing...
Goal: 65,000 words
Words Written: 42,321
Words Remaining: 22,679
Days Remaining: 13
Biggest Issue: I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing. There are 42,000 words in this damn thing, and I have yet to write the actual romance part. Methinks I am doing this all wrong.