Monday, August 20, 2012

Mixed Weekend

I was reminded of something this weekend:  Jesus wasn't accepted in his home town.

Why was this of any importance?

When I left Morgan County six years ago, I had only one pubbed book.  And when I promoted it, strangers were the only ones who were thrilled and bought it.  My friends congratulated me, but since they 'didn't have time to read', and the kids who wanted to read it weren't old enough...yeah, you get the picture.

Two years ago, I made a brief appearance at the funeral home when one of K's former classmates died in a car accident.  I was greeted enthusiastically by one of my closer friends, and surprise, surprise, very enthusiastically by someone I didn't like very well.  But 'since I was published', she felt the need to throw her arms around me and tell me how much she missed me.  Whatever; I was gracious and went on my way.

This past weekend, we showed up on Friday.  We stepped through the doors of the Fire Barn and daughter was immediately grabbed by former classmate.  I was greeted with 'Hi, Molly; good to see you again.'  And a few other people's eyes widened when they saw us and asked how we'd been.

It was sort of like my 10-yr class reunion; I saw people I recognized, but had no desire to speak to them.  This time, I figured I'd see them the next day.  We left around 8:30 and went back to the hotel to swim.

Saturday, I got a shock.  Normally Saturday was full of activities:  games, tractor pulls, BINGO, and the Miss Blaze/Firecracker pageant, and Car Show.  This time, nada.  I set up around 11am and passed the time redoing my shelves (the old plastic tablecloths were tearing in places) and writing the new wip ('Randy' has been bugging me for two weeks, telling me the back story and giving me ideas for what he's doing now). I also fielded questions about when events began and where to buy the game tickets.

Around 4, the daughter and I walked over to a friend's house and surprised them.  She hadn't checked her FB page in four days (note to self:  Broadcast travel plans every day the week before trip) and therefore had no idea I would be in town (I'd have thought the message asking about a close motel would have been a strong hint!).  We stayed about forty-five minutes, then left her to finish her 'Operation Clean Closets'.  She said she'd be over when finished.

I did get one person who asked about my books:  But when I mentioned romance, she said, "I don't read that trash.  I like history or biographies.  My sister likes it, though.  Stuffs them under the bed and under the couch so no one knows what she's reading.  Buys two or three each week."

"Well, send your sister over to me then.  Have a nice day!"  I kept a smile on my face as she wandered off.

Around seven pm, I had a small crowd at my the back.  I'd picked a spot next to the fence so I wouldn't have people cutting through my tent, but my friends chose to talk to me OVER the fence.  I did generate some interest when I mentioned who inspired Kenzie's Teacher's Pet, and handed out two of the cover flats.  But otherwise, the weekend was unproductive, except for the seven pages I now have to type.

Sunday, we went to church, then wandered through the old neighborhood.  Discovered one of the better houses had been abandoned; we're seriously considering looking into seeing if we could afford to buy it.

Went to lunch at the Hilltop Restaurant, a place we'd always talked about trying, but never had.  And now we're talking about returning in three weeks for their breakfast!  I'm setting up in Monrovia Sept 7th, so Saturday morning we can get a delicious breakfast before heading back to Monrovia, lol...

We'll see what happens.  In the meantime, I'll be sending in my cover art form for Endless Love, plus proofing Searching For Love and submitting it.  And yes, typing up 'Randy's' story!


Sarah said...

Funny...the past few days I've been pondering a blog post about how you can't go home again - and you're talking about doing just that :) Morgan County is beautiful, remote country so I can't blame you.

Nice to meet another Indiana author!! (I just signed w/ Secret Cravings :D )

Molly Daniels said...

Congratulations Sarah!!! SCP is AWESOME! What part of Indiana do you live in?

Patricia said...

I live and write in my home town and two of my books are set in my home town as well. When I go to the two annual craft fairs I run into people who say, "oh, you're the author" and I smile. They don't buy my book but they know who I am. Don't know what that means, if anything, but it does make me happy.

Molly Daniels said...

I think they're thrilled to 'know' you:) So when we get rich and famous some day, they can smile and say "We knew her when..." :)

Cindy A Christiansen said...

I get the same thing from friends and family: "I don't have much time to read," they say. But then they go on to tell you about the latest Twilight or Hunger Games book.
People are sheep.
Enjoy the followers who really enjoy your books and don't worry about the rest. I just had a fan pay me almost double what I asked for a print copy because she's loved all my books so much and she said it was worth it! You can't beat that.

Fran Lee said...

LOL! When I was working full time, years before I began seriously writing, some of my co-workers read parts of my first unpublished book. One co-worker couldn't put it down. Others were a tad embarrassed because it was romance...erotic at that. After I left my job and pubbed my first book, I sent a jpg image of the cover to one of my co-workers who keeps a photo of her hubby (naked as a jay bird, bending down to drink out of a creek) on her desk for all to giggle over...and she was aghast that I had sent her the cover of Out of Her Dreams. She thought it was one of those joke book covers that folks have made up.

I live in Utah, and I am more than certain that nobody here OPENLY reads erotic romance...but I am constantly asked about my books by women who know I write. Some even order instantly through their Kindles when I am talking to them.

Ah...the anonymity and safety of a hand-held reader where folks can't see the cover of the book you are reading.

Nobody here really "knows" me...but they love my books. :)

Larry Payne said...

It's amazing how much this hit home! The big question I get is "Oh, you're a writer? I never would have expected that!". Do Tell!
In my experience most acquaintances and family always want a "handout" instead of buying the book. You would think friends and family would be the first ones to buy a book. Even if you don't read what I write, buy one. I'm family or a "homey".
This was a great post. I can relate. BTW, I'm from Indiana, too. I grew up in East Chicago. Indiana Harbor side!

Molly Daniels said...

@Cindy: You're right; I have someone who's dying to read Teacher's Pet, but they don't have an ereader. So I offered to print it out for her, but it would cost $20 instead of the online price of $5. She said she didn't care....,but every time we cross paths, she doesn't have any money. But she posts on FB all the time about the designer clothes she's bought her kids. I think she's hoping I'll give up and just give it to her. NOT!

@Fran: Isn't it funny about the double standard? Displays naked pics, but to see a naked man on a cover...ugh. Guess she never read any Johanna Lindsay books....

@Larry: Yay, another Hoosier! Ironically enough, when my 1st self-pubbed book arrived, my grandmother pressed a ten dollar bill in my hand after I gave it to her! Later she admitted she wouldn't read any others I'd written; it was too 'racy' for her. But she hung onto it; I found it on her bookshelf after she passed away last year.

Fiona McGier said...

Yup, I get exactly the same reaction from people in the town I live in, as well as family. I even had a sister-in-law tell me she couldn't even finish my first book because she kept "seeing" her brother and me in the erotic scenes! Even though the heroine was red-headed and the hero was Hispanic, and my husband and I are neither! Sheesh!

People always ask what I write, then when I say romance, they hem and haw, or ask, "Who reads THAT stuff?" I feel for you, I really do!

Molly Daniels said...

@Fiona: Even when we had the book store, people shunned our romance section. We got a few women who would buy one or two, but the majority wanted the mysteries or Fantasies. And of course, our Local History books walked off almost as fast as they came in.

We hadn't set out the Harlequins, but a woman inquired about them for her daughter, but then never returned after I offered to dig through the boxes (took me ten minutes).

jean hart stewart said...

All too, too true. Sigh.

Mickie Sherwood said...

There are a few people in my hometown who inquire about my writing. I've even run into one who said she bought one of my books. And I can identify with an earlier commenter who mentioned family reactions. I seldom mention my writing to my family anymore because of their disinterest. But I keep writing because I love it.

Molly Daniels said...

@Jean: Thanks for stopping by!

@Mickie: It's funny; whenever I run into one of my readers, it's always praise. The spouse puffs up, pats me on the back, and says, "Go write another one." But when I AM writing, he yells at me to get off the computer, or whines about being ignored.

Molly Daniels said...

Also, Mickie, I used to talk about my books so much, my family AND friends got tired of it and either changed the subject quickly (it's amazing how much I can 'tie' in my books with any conversation, lol!) or never let me get a word in edgewise!