Is this not the perfect combination? A bit of sugar, butter, chocolate… and words.
One of the most pleasant moments in my day is when I drink my night tea with a couple of biscuits while I enjoy a good book.
Last Saturday I attended a wonderful event in Lancaster: ‘Out of This World’ Fiction Fest, where I had the chance to meet authors such as J S Collyer, A S Chambers and Eddie Robson. The day was very Gothic – no sun at all and I was drenched in rain before I could find Gregson Centre. Lancaster is a haunted town whose streets mutate constantly to drive people mad. Even the minotaur would have got lost in this laberynth, I promise. The castle is literally everywhere and the Ashton Memorial observes your confusion laughing from the distance.
But something really nice was waiting for me when I arrived.
Books and home-made biscuits? Oh yes, please.
(My friends maintain I just bought Tomorrow Never Knows because it came with a free biscuit, but tha’s not truth at all. I had heard wonderful reviews about this book. It’s Sci-fi and it has in it a religious cult which worships the Beatles… I mean, how can you not be interested in reading that??)
All this made me think, though. Bringing biscuits was a very nice gesture towards the possible buyers of the book. Food is good – sweet and free food, specially.
Should we be grateful towards our readers for buying our books? Of course! However, an annoying voice inside my head says that readers must feel privileged for buying my books and they should be the ones bringing me the biscuits in any case!
But then again, I just think about how privileged I feel everytime I walk into a shop and they offer me free sweets. Or when I go to the bank and they give me free pens – although they’re so damn rich that they could give me something more like a house… Or when I go to a hotel and they have free tea and coffe in the room. It just makes you feel so cared and loved. Writers should love their readers – and vice versa.
Plus it’s so cool when you go to some literary event to discover that your favourite authors are also friendly people – I would never forget meeting Gabriella Campbell and José Antonio Cotrina in the Wizard Con. And it’s devastating when authors behave as they were gods or as if they were making you a favor just by breathing the air in the same room as you – yep, this has also happened to me and to most people, I imagine.
I – at least – don’t write to be issolated or to hide behind my words. I’m also up to go out there to sell my books and talk about them – like the brave and enthusiastic authors from ‘Out of This World’ Fiction Fest did. I would like to be a minstrel, travelling – travelling is always good – and entertaining people with my words. A bit of drama? Yeah, sure. And baking biscuits? Yeah, although I’m afraid I’m not as good as Eddie Robson because… because last time I baked muffins they exploded inside the oven.
What are your thoughts on this? Are you up to self-promotion? Would you enjoy it? What are your experiences meeting other authors?