Bruce Robert Coffin here, wishing a happy March to all! The madness of winter has almost ended. Be brave.
As we draw closer to spring, I wanted to reflect a bit on the ongoing promotion that I’ve been doing for my debut novel, Among the Shadows. This past week I made two more appearances, Tuesday I was at the Naples Public Library and yesterday I spoke at the Cumberland Club in Portland in front of the Rotary Club of Portland Sunrise. I have to tell you, this might be my favorite thing next to actually writing the books. And it’s a good thing I feel this way, yesterday’s Rotary appearance was my 36th since the book launched last September, and I have two more scheduled for next week!
Why do I enjoy this aspect of being an author so much? Well, first off, I’d have to say it’s largely because of the people who turn out to these events. Fellow book lovers, closet writers, and mystery fans. The crowds tend to be enthusiastic and no two appearances are ever the same. Some of them have already read my novel while many others haven’t. Most of the audiences want me to read a passage or two and they all want to ask questions. Some focus on my path to publication, some about my prior career in law enforcement, some want me to describe my writing process, and a few hearty souls want to hear about all of it. The librarians and bookstore owners/employees are great too. They spend a great deal of time getting the word out, sending press releases, posting fliers, updating websites and social media. There’s a lot more to it than simply putting on the coffee and unlocking the doors.
What I enjoy most are the questions posed about my characters, John Byron, Diane Joyner, and the rest of the gang. People want to know what makes them tick, what they’ll be up to next, and whether or not I based them on real people. Why do I find these questions so enjoyable? Because I spend most of my time with these characters and it’s nice to know that others care about them as much as I do. Call it a shared psychosis if you like but for me it’s affirmation that my writing matters to people.
Someone said do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life. Well, that’s not entirely true, writing novels is a hell of a lot of work. But sharing the experience with others, that is simply awesome.
If you’d like to learn more about scheduling an appearance, visit my website at: brucerobertcoffin.com or drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bruce, I noticed you spoke in Naples recently. Did you grow up there? I grew up in Casco, and went to school with a Bonnie Coffin. Any relation? Thanks! Congrats on the success of Among the Shadows.
Thanks, Beth! No, I grew up in Scarborough. I don’t believe I know Bonnie.
Good to hear how much you enjoy the people who turn out for your events! I find that, too, whether they buy the book or not. All the best. –kate
Thank you, Kate!
Having seen you in action, I have to say you do a great job. Your enthusiasm and detailed knowledge of -and real relationship with your characters- is infectious.
I agree — appearances are exhausting — but very rewarding! Talk on!
Glad you like the promotion part. I love talking in libraries and feeling the enthusiasm of people who love to read.
Bruce–That is an amazing promotion schedule. You set the example for other debut authors.
I recently attended your reading and book signing at the Naples Public Library on February 28 and enjoyed it very much. I purchased your book and enjoyed it very much. Will you be back when your next book is published? Hope to see you then. Norma