A strange creature on the poster to the right chewed on the arm of a headless body. The skull and dentures in the center of the table were flanked by candles with pictures of Christ - a friendly face among the gore.
He had come to offer a few words of greeting to the attendees of the conference, which he did. Then he held up my book and endorsed it, calling the book refreshing. I was humbled that he gave me an endorsement for the back cover of the book, stunned that he stood before several hundred women and publicly endorsed it.
AN ALMOST PERFECT DAY
Then her large poster leaped from the table and slapped a woman in the face as she walked by our table. We added more books to the table to keep the poster from attacking another potential customer.
A MISSIONARY EXPERIENCE
For the next ten minutes, I had a taste of what it’s like to speak in a foreign land as everything I said was translated into Spanish. Many of the congregation members were from Honduras, so I shared how a woman from Honduras started my writing career and read an excerpt from Pastor Wades story.
WHERE CAN I FIND YOUR BOOK?
My publisher’s marketing department was ahead of me in the marketing marathon. I asked them to slow the pace so I could finish distributing the complimentary copies. On the heels of that request, I scheduled three churches and three events. So much for a slower pace and accomplishing one goal at a time. Then a hurricane blew through town canceling six opportunities to sell books.
SANTA BOUGHT MY BOOK
"Hello, Teena. This is Liz from Hosanna Church. Would you like to sell your book at Imagine Christmas this weekend?" A voice emanated from under the quilt on my bed. "People go to Imagine Christmas for the show and free stuff. You won't sell any books."
“Do you have writings on the internet?” Clearly, she had stumbled upon one of my four blogs and recognized my name and image. Unsure of which blog she was referring to, I responded with the blog that had the most readers, “I write for NOLA.com’s Faith Blog.”
KEEP THE CHANGE
I had not planned to sell books and was not prepared to make change. The first man handed me a $20. “I’m sorry. I don’t have change,” I said. “Keep the change,” he responded. I was selling the book for $15. It retailed for $16.99. Why would anyone give me an extra $5 for a book swirled in my mind unable to take root and send a response to my mouth.
WELCOME TO MARKETING
Before I received my books, an acquaintance called. She tried to buy five books from the publisher’s website, but the links did not work. I called my marketing representative the publisher had assigned to me. He promptly called my friend to take her order. I had questioned that anyone would spend money on something I wrote, and was surprised that my first sell was not one but five books.
FIRST FORAY IN MARKETING
She returned with Robin Wells, St. Tammany Parish Literary Artist of the Year and author of sixteen critically acclaimed fiction romance novels that had been translated into eighteen languages. Her books had won the National Golden Heart Award, two National Readers’ Choice Awards, the Award of Excellence, the Golden Quill, and the Holt Medallion. I wondered how I merited being on a panel with such a distinguished author.