“So, honey. I could use your help. I need a way to crash a plane,” I said. Hubby and I were eating lunch at Buffalo Wild Wings. I needed his thirty-plus years of experience and contacts in the fire service for plotting my current book.
His eyebrows practically arched off his head. His gaze darted around the room. A couple local police officers sat a few tables away. Hubby nodded at them then leaned back and inhaled, deep and shaky. “Crashing a plane. Hmm.”
“Yeah. Or maybe a poison.” That swirled around in my head for about thirty seconds. “Yeah, poison might actually work better. Just enough of a drug to make the pilot a little woozy, but not enough to kill him.”
Hubby scrunched his face, gave another quick glance around the dining room, and hunched his generous body lower in the bench. In the smallest voice he’s capable of, which would still be booming, he said, “Poison. OK. Give me this afternoon. I’ll make some phone calls and find you something to work with.”
A head from a nearby booth jerked and swiveled in our direction. Frowning, the man leaned toward his lunch partner and whispered, began frantically punching numbers into a cell phone.
Hubby bolted to his feet and held out a hand. “You ready to go?”
Flinging a desperate glance over his shoulder, he offered an apologetic wave to the police officers and hustled me out the door.
I’m thankful for my real-life hero. And that we live in a small town.
Hubby is an integral part of my writing journey, from character development to plotting to marketing.
When our local library contacted me about speaking, I balked. What would I say? Who would listen? Hubby encouraged me, even offered some basic topics to tackle. Thankfully, the library manager allotted me a few months to hammer out a presentation and bolster my confidence. When I stepped to the podium, my knees buckled and my voice trembled. My nerves finally settled, and I actually found that I enjoyed the interaction with readers.
Over breakfast a few weeks later, I mentioned visiting a friend who lived a couple hours away.
“Why don’t you visit the library and donate a copy of Journey’s End?” Hubby asked. “The library gets a new book, and for a minimal investment, you’re getting your book in the hands of readers who may buy future books. The way I see it, it’s a win-win.”
Did I mention how supportive and encouraging my hubby is? His suggestion opened up the door for many library invitations.
Here are some tips on Romancing the Library:
Plan your trips and vacations. Map out your route and check library systems in advance to make sure they don’t already stock your book. I have a better success rate with smaller-to-mid-sized branch libraries, so I target them as much as possible. If you’ll be vacationing, email the local librarians to let them know the dates you’ll be visiting. A librarian in Virginia invited me to speak while we stayed in the area for a fire conference.
|Dora speaks at the York County Library|
Bring your smile and your one sheet. Your enthusiasm breeds excitement. Smile and introduce yourself, trailing your finger along the book covers on your one sheet as you talk.
Inquire if they are receptive to author events and procure the manager’s email address/contact info. Many library managers complain that their readers aren’t interested in straight book signings, but their eyes light up when you offer information their patrons can use. A skeletal presentation can be expanded to cover many topics, depending on the library’s needs. My presentations include: A Glimpse into Publishing, Social Media for the Beginning Writer, and Heart-to-Heart.
|Dora speaks at Steele Creek Library|
Request a tax donation form. This will ensure that you receive credit for your investment at income tax time.
Follow up. Email a few days after your visit, reminding the library manager of your donation and your presentations offering. Specify a target time frame, i.e. fall or early 2013. Attach your one sheet so they can remember you.
Recognize that library opportunities take time. You may not hear from a library for months. Don’t get discouraged. Writers know all about waiting, don’t we?
Don’t discount the contacts you’ll make in a library. A newspaper reporter wrote about a library’s summer reading program and mentioned my program. Another presentation prompted an invitation for a radio interview. In another, a patron invited me to speak elsewhere.
Romancing the Library is a win-win. Hubby was right. Poor guy. He never knows what awaits him on a lunch date.
If you’re interested in Romancing the Library, make sure you check out Myra Johnson’s great article on What Works and What Doesn’t at Libraries.
What about you?
Does your loved one support and encourage your writing journey?
Have you considered romancing the library?
Thank you so much for allowing me to visit. Join the conversation today for a chance to win a print copy of Journey’s Edge.
About Journey’s Edge:
A Routine Audit? Hardly.
Red flags—including some goon who's following her—raise McKinley Frasier's suspicions that numbers don't add up at the insurance firm. When someone tries to snatch McKinley's daughter from school, she turns to police officer and ex-fiancé, Renner Crossman—the cop who walked out on her a month before their wedding. But Renner's not the same guy who broke her heart ten years ago. He calls himself a "new man." She trusts the new Renner with her daughter's safety...but what about her heart?
Purchase Link for Journey’s Edge
About Dora Hiers:
After a successful auditing career, Dora left the corporate world to be a stay-at-home mom to her two sons. When her youngest son didn’t want her hanging out at school with him anymore, Dora started writing Heart Racing, God-Gracing books. Dora belongs to the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Carolina Christian Writers.
When Dora isn’t writing, she enjoys reading, family gatherings, and mountain cabin getaways. She despises traffic, bad coffee, technological meltdowns, and a sad ending to a book. Her books always end with a happily-ever-after!
Readers can connect with Dora:
Website ~ Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest
Blog: Seriously Write and Heart Racing, God-Gracing Romance