Tuesday, April 15, 2008


On Saturday, April 12, 2008, I held two signings for my debut novel, After The Dance. More than 50 folks showed up at both events--approximately 51 at the first one and 58 at the second. According the my calculations, close to 100 (99) copies of After The Dance were sold and signed within the span of 4 hours.

Forgive me for being glib, but really I have to say this to the bookseller who declined to arrange a signing of my book at his store because in his words, Memphis isn't a big enough town for two launch parties . . . What the?! Who said anything about?! Anyway, maybe, just maybe what's lacking in size Mr. Bookseller Ole Boy is your vision. Free your mind and your @$$ just might follow (LOL).

In any case, there are a few things I will definitely do differently the next time out. We actually ran out of books at the 2nd signing--something which could have been easily avoided, but that's all right. Like I said, now that I know who's willing to work with me and who's not . . . (LOL).

Hey, it was and is still all good (smile). Approximately 20 minutes into the 2nd affair when it looked like we were about to run out of books, my quick thinking niece and sister-in-law called the bookstore at the mall across the street. On locating another ready supply, they went and bought a handful and brought them back over for me to sign. A couple of other folks did the same. Wow! How's that for being "resourceful?" You've gotta love it, dontcha? Shortly after that little stunt, another boxful of my books suddenly materialized (LOL).

A great big ole shout out to everyone who bought a book and/or in some way lent their time, energy and support to making the launch of my debut novel in Memphis a success. Thanks for helping me prove that Memphians of all racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds will turn out and support a sister who dares hold two book signings at two different venues on one day (smile).


Malcolm said...

Congrats on your successful book signings. The anxieties that authors and booksellers go through (will people show up? will there be enough books?, etc.) can be trying. By the way, props to your relatives' resourcefulness in getting more books for you to sign.

Lori said...

Thanks. Guess what? I'm thinking of adding your fair city to my travel plans for next year (smile) Actually, my hubby's family has a family reunion planned for downtown Detroit next July. I may hit you up by email for bookstore suggestions/recommendations.

Also, I realize most of my signings won't have the same kind of turn-out as the ones in Memphis. I've read where the average number of attendees at any given book signing is 6 (six).

pjazzypar said...

Hey Lori,

I am glad that everything turned out so well for you on your book tour to the city that inspired you. I always wanted to visit Memphis, but now after reading your book I really want to go and look up Carl (smile). It's wonderful that your family is so supportive and squashed what could have been a potential problem.

As for the seller who would not arrange a book signing at his store, forget him. By the way what July are you talking about 08 or 09?

Lori said...

Thanks and LOL at your wanting to visit Memphis, if only to look up Carl. You're not the first. The lady who conducted the public library radio interview had me wondering if she actually thought Carl was real (smile).

July of next year (09) is when I'm thinking of traveling to Detroit. I already have a couple of things set up for Cleveland, Ohio this July (08).

bettye griffin said...

Lori, Congrats on the successful book signings. It's times like these when I really miss my hometown (Yonkers, New York). The homegirls have always come out to support me and put a smile on the face of the bookstore manager. But since I now live in the sticks north of Chicago, my booksignings will be in a city where I know maybe one or two people. Except for the lunchtime signing at the CNN Center (always fairly successful because it's such a busy place), I'll probably get those six people you talked about . . .

Lori said...

Hi Bettye,
I feel ya (smile). I haven't lived in Charlotte that long and I know not to expect the kind of crowd I drew in Memphis.

Chicago is another city I hope to visit next year. The hubby and I both have relatives in the area--aunts, uncles, first cousins and all of that (LOL).

Emanuel Carpenter said...


Anonymous said...

Hello Lori. I'm glad to hear everything turned out well. What's the dates of your booksigning in Charlotte?

Sheila Wilcox

Lori said...

@ Emanuel,
Thanks! You've got next (smile).

@ Shelia,
I have a couple of dates scheduled for Charlotte in May. I'll post them over the next couple of days, so keep checking back. Thanks for asking.

Michelle said...

Congrats on a great book signing tour!
'Just came across this snippet on the Borders Books site:

Description: "After the Dance" is a dazzling debut from a fresh new talent who captures the hilarity of everyday life in a charming novel of modern love.

Go ahead, girl! Fresh new talent indeed! I'm bringing my copy to Charlotte next weekend (Art and Soul), for a personalized autograph, please?!

Lori said...

Hey Michelle,
I appreciate you pointing out the positive. In any case, being called a "fresh new talent" is a lot better than being hearlded as "some stank old soul." (LOL)

Speaking of "soul," I don't know if I'm going to make the Art & Soul festival this year. The young'un has baseball next week and a school festival to attend. The boy actually volunteered to be one of the folks who sit in the dunking booth. This, I've gotta see (smile).

But you could always send me your copy and I'll happily sign it and send it back to you. Also, I may be in your neck of the woods one of the these weekends this summer. I'll keep you posted.