Wednesday, October 06, 2010
Doing the Bookstore Hustle
But there he was in the Lula Lounge, in full colour, three dimensions, in the flesh, across the table from me with his book, The Fire in Bradford, in hand. "I'll show you mine if you you show me yours," he grinned.
Another Story Bookshop on hand selling Drive-by Saviours I didn't have any swap copies. The swap had been my suggestion, but with all the insanity of travel, visiting family and friends, organizing book launches and an Eastern Canadian book tour, I'd forgotten. I promised to send Ivan a copy in the mail and he gave me his book, shook my hand and heartily congratulated me. And he was gone, making way for the next in line.
It was one of a series of surreal encounters I've had lately with old friends. The support has been overwhelming - people I haven't seen in years, people I've only met online, have come out to my two book launches in Halifax and Toronto to celebrate my accomplishment.
And now, writing from a friend's home in East Toronto, planning to head up to Kent Bookstore in Lindsay Ontario in a few hours for another reading and more old friends (and to meet a boisterous one-year-old), I'm feeling a deep easy happiness in that willingness to celebrate what others among us do.
At the same time, I ache for my wife and son, who flew back to Halifax yesterday morning at about crack o'clock, and I long for my own bed where I could properly nurse this worsening cold. Suddenly I'm a lone drifter again, something I missed and didn't expect to experience again so soon. Last time I was a young man, full of abstractions and equipped with an eager pen and ink-hungry notebooks. It all seems a little more businesslike this time - I'm a drifter with a mission, a product to move. I feel like a huckster with a money-bulge in my pocket.
That's not a complaint. I'm loving meeting people, sharing my art with them, and experiencing their kind and enthusiastic responses - their questions, comments and cash. Living the dream for me has moved beyond sloganism and into reality.
Wonderful evening. I think you had a hundred people out!...Almost unheard of for a first novelist.
I especially enjoyed Kevin Fortnum' slam poetry. Look out Walking Man, you got competition in Toronto. :)...and that lovely "damsel with a dulcimer", Sarah Kenvyn, the folk singer doing her own stuff. I am in love again!
Enjoyed your read of the three passages from your magnum upus, Drive-by Saviours.
I Came back from the launch with somehow a very warm gemutlich feeling.Some of those I talked to outside said the same thing.
(I was once married to a Dahmele, and I can't get out of the idiom. :)
Can't get into your site today.
No word verification symbol?
I guess there's noting you can do about that...I am hoping other readers try again and again to get into your comment space.
Hope the res of your journey is just as powerful. And I hope your health improves, got a nasty cold right now as well.
Donetta: Indeed they are. Besides me, three other members of my writers group have books coming out.
Eric: Congrats on joining a band. Sounds fun. I hope you make a myspace page or something so I can check it.
Toast: weeeeee! Thanks for buying. Did you buy it direct from the publisher? Just wondering because another friend in the UK had trouble getting it from Amazon.