Today I am honored to welcome author Julie Cross to my blog to do a guest post! Julie will be giving some pointers on what to do when meeting an author.
Julie lives in central Illinois with her husband and three children. She never considered writing professionally until May of 2009. Since then, she hasn’t gone a day without writing.
Check out my Facebook Fanpage
and my publisher's page for the TEMPEST SERIES
I know the title makes it sound like I can speak for all authors, but unfortunately, I can't. BUT I want to invite any and all published authors to speak up as to whether they agree or disagree with my take on this matter. Otherwise, I guess my opinoin will stand for all.
In the past several months, I've had the opportunity to do a number of author events so I've gathered data and here's some things book fans need to know when meeting an author:
"Grool...I meant to say cool and then I started to say great." --Mean Girls
1. I do NOT expect you to recognize me without me introducing myself, even if you are the events planner, my biggest fan, my grandmother (okay, she should recognize me), or someone who's done forensic analyze on my author photo (and if you have...creepy! or else you know something...).
People never look exactly like you expect from an author photo. I've gotten all kinds of comments mostly along the lines of..."oh, you're much smaller than you look in your photo..." So, apparently I look strong and bad-ass in my picture and less than that in real life. I'm cool with that. So, don't go home and brood over not recognizing your favorite author in person...it's okay. I promise.
"There are two kinds of evil people in this world. Those who do evil things and those who see evil things and don't try to stop it." --Mean Girls
2. I do NOT expect you to have heard of my novel or know what it's about. And guess what...I am usually VERY surprised when people have heard of me. For example, I saw YA author, Stephanie Perkins, in the bathroom during Romantic Times Teen Day this past April and I said hi and told her my name and she said..."Oh...Tempest, right?" and I nearly fainted. No lie.
And guess what else, if you haven't heard of the author you meet's novel(s) then they get to TELL you about their books and then possibly gain a new fan. Which, to be honest, isn't possible if you're already a fan. See? It's a win/win situation. This may happen to you if you go to an event where there are multiple authors and maybe you are there for one or two of those authors and the other two or three you haven't ever heard of...you might start to get a little nervous about having books signed because you don't know at least one of the authors and you don't have enough money/arm strength to buy their books, too, don't even think about sneaking out the back or quickly google educating yourself (googicating?). There's no need.
Feel free to walk right up to them (don't interrupt the show or anything) and tell them, "I'd never heard of your book, but now I want to read it" or "I know my sister would love to read it" or "I'm going to recommend it to all my friends who like unicorns under water"...or whatever. I would be shocked if this didn't please them very much.
"Well, this has been sufficiently awkward..." --Mean Girls
3. You do NOT need to feel guilty about not buying an author's book at an event. Authors know better than anyone that books are expensive...in fact, some of us tried to get paid in free books instead of money...some of us only started writing so that books and book conventions could be tax deductible. We get that people have e-readers, that hard cover novels are expensive (and heavy), we get that people use the library and borrow books (this is awesome!), and we do realize that every person will not be able to read every book ever made so yeah, we know you might not ever read our book(s). This is OKAY too.
In general, I live under the assumption that the majority of people will NEVER read my book so if you choose to read my book, I won't be only satisfied or simply not upset, I'll probably be ecstatic. Or at least I'll use the word really or excited or even really excited.
"My apologies. I have a nephew named Anfernee, and I know how mad he gets when I call him Anthony. Almost as mad as I get when I think about the fact that my sister named him Anfernee." --Mean Girls
4. If you HAVE read an author's book before meeting said author and you a) didn't really like their book or maybe you gush to the author beside her/him that he/she has written your favorite book, do NOT feel bad. This isn't little league baseball. Everyone doesn't get to bat and everyone doesn't get a trophy. We know that. When you write something that makes one person fall in love with a book you are 100% at risk to make another person hate your book. The best selling novels almost always have love/hate relationships with readers.
OR b) you read it, liked it, and suddenly you forget the main character's name or the love interests name...don't panic! Seriously. It's an author's job to remember those details and to make the readers remember them. It's not your job to be ready for a book pop quiz prior to an author event. If you are, that's cool, too. We will might even shed tears of joy upon learning how much you remember but we don't EXPECT it. Trust me. We are writing for you. You are the customer. The customer is always right.
"Why should Caesar get to stomp around like a giant, while the rest of us try not to get smushed under his big feet? What's so great about Caesar? Hm? Brutus is just as cute as Caesar. Brutus is just as smart as Caesar. People totally like Brutus just as much as they like Caesar. And when did it become okay for one person to be the boss of everybody, huh? Because that's not what Rome is about. We should totally just STAB Caesar!" --Mean Girls
5. If you meet an author you haven't heard of before or you haven't read their novel and the reaction does not follow along with what I have preached in this post...well, all I can say is everyone can turn life into high school and if that's the case, it's their loss, in my opinoin. I'm hoping this never happens amongst authors, but I know there's always exceptions to every situation.
And guess what...authors screw up too...with other authors and man we should know everything, right? I mean it's our job. For example, I failed to recognize Jay Asher the first (and only) time I met him in person. He was very forgiving.
Here's the big secret: Authors are people too. We seriously are. I swear.
So, who have you met and why did you love/hate this experience? Did you have an embarrassing moment with an author that you have been mopping about for months and months or like a day?
Julie is the author of Tempest (Tempest #1):
Title: Tempest (Tempest #1)
Publication Date: January 17, 2012
Blurb from Goodreads:
The year is 2009. Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy… he’s in college, has a girlfriend… and he can travel back through time. But it’s not like the movies – nothing changes in the present after his jumps, there’s no space-time continuum issues or broken flux capacitors – it’s just harmless fun.
That is… until the day strangers burst in on Jackson and his girlfriend, Holly, and during a struggle with Jackson, Holly is fatally shot. In his panic, Jackson jumps back two years to 2007, but this is not like his previous time jumps. Now he’s stuck in 2007 and can’t get back to the future.
Desperate to somehow return to 2009 to save Holly but unable to return to his rightful year, Jackson settles into 2007 and learns what he can about his abilities.
But it’s not long before the people who shot Holly in 2009 come looking for Jackson in the past, and these “Enemies of Time” will stop at nothing to recruit this powerful young time-traveler. Recruit… or kill him.
Piecing together the clues about his father, the Enemies of Time, and himself, Jackson must decide how far he’s willing to go to save Holly… and possibly the entire world
...and the soon to be release Vortex (Tempest #2):
Title: Vortex (Tempest #2)
Expected Publication Date: January 8, 2012
Blurb from Goodreads:
Jackson Meyer has thrown himself into his role as an agent for Tempest, the shadowy division of the CIA that handles all time-travel-related threats. Despite his heartbreak at losing the love of his life, Jackson has proved himself to be an excellent agent. However, after an accidental run in with Holly—the girl he altered history to save—Jackson is once again reminded of what he's lost. And when Eyewall, an opposing division of the CIA, emerges, Jackson and his fellow agents not only find themselves under attack, but Jackson begins to discover that the world around him has changed and someone knows about his erased relationship with Holly, putting both their lives at risk all over again
Julie has also written a novella which is the prequel to Tempest called Tomorrow is Today (Tempest #0.5):
Title: Tomorrow is Today (Tempest #0.5)
Publication Date: December 6, 2011
Blurb from Goodreads:
The year is 2009. Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy… he’s in college, throws lots of parties, is interested in a girl he can’t have, and oh yeah, he can travel back through time.
But it’s not like the movies – nothing changes in the present after his jumps, there’s no space-time continuum issues or broken flux capacitors – it’s just harmless fun.
And for those of you who do not know, Julie is holding a contest on her blog! Go check this puppy out because you will not be disappointed (click link below)!!!