My book on the library shelf
Playing the Genetic Lottery is my ninth book, but my first novel and my first self-published book. So for me, it’s very special, and I still get a thrill when I see the cover of my novel. I’m pleased to have it offered for sale in all four of the independent bookstores in Santa Cruz County, where I live. I’m so pleased, in fact, that when friends and family visit from out of town I usually take them to one or more of the bookstores so they can see my novel on the shelves.
I’m happy to say that so far my visitors have been excited to see my book for sale, or at least done a good job of pretending to. And now I’ll have another venue to show them. Yesterday the Santa Cruz Public Library System purchased four copies of Playing the Genetic Lottery. While the copies have to be entered into the library system and processed before becoming available to borrowers, I’m excited for several reasons. As an avid reader, and a longtime library patron, I’m looking forward to seeing my book on the shelves in some of the library branches that I’ve spent so much time in. I’m also very happy I was able to sell copies to the library because I was under the impression they didn’t purchase self-published books.
I had been told that by another writer who also self-published her novel. She complained to me that her local library refused to buy her book, although they did accept a donated copy. She was miffed, because the librarian told her that libraries only buy books from established publishers. Even though she volunteered regularly at her local library, the libraries acquisition department refused to make an exception for her. After hearing her diatribe about the unfairness of it all, I was almost convinced she was right.
Fortunately, however, I’ve been a journalist for most of my career, and as such, have been trained to be skeptical. As a reporter, I always tried to get “facts” confirmed by more than one source. And as a reporter, I’ve learned not to be afraid to ask questions, even if you suspect the answer will be “no comment,” “leave me alone,” or something more hostile.
So earlier this week, when I was at the library, I asked the manager who I needed to talk to about selling my book to the library system. She gave me a name and a number. As it turned out, the woman she suggested I contact wasn’t the correct person. But she was friendly and offered to find out who was. Ten minutes later, my phone rang, and another friendly woman from the library administration department was on the line, asking for information about my novel. To make a long story short, the following morning I hand delivered the books along with an invoice.
I don’t know if my local library system bucks a trend and makes exceptions for local authors or not. I do know, however, that if you don’t ask, the answer is always no. And I’m very glad I did ask. As a writer, I want my work to be read. Sure I’d prefer it if each reader purchased their own copy of my book, but as a new and relatively unknown novelist, I’m always looking for ways to get the word out about Playing the Genetic Lottery. Word of mouth is the best form of advertising I’ve found, and the more people who read it, means there is likely going to be more people talking about it. And as a longtime library patron, I’m proud to have my latest book on the library shelves for others in my community to enjoy.
Thank you, Terri!
She blogs on her website at http://www.terrimorgan.net/terris-blog.html
You can contact her at Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Playing-the-Genetic-Lottery-a-novel-by-Terri-Morgan/192095997524663
If you would like to write a writing-related guest post for my blog then feel free to email me with an outline of what you would like to write about. If it’s writing-related then it’s highly likely I’d email back and say “yes please”.
The blog interviews return as normal tomorrow morning with historical mystery author Eleanor Sullivan – the six hundred and fourteenth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, bloggers, autobiographers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.
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As I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t unfortunately review books but I have a list of those who do, and a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words (and post stories of up to 3,000 words), or posted for others to critique (up to 5,000 words) on the new Morgen’s Online Short Story Writing Group. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me posting it online in my new Red Pen Critique Sunday night posts, then do email me. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry and Morgen’s Online Poetry Writing Group.
Four new online writing groups:
- Morgen’s Online Novel Writing Group (http://novelwritinggroup.wordpress.com / http://www.facebook.com/groups/508696639153189)
- Morgen’s Online Poetry Writing Group (http://poetrywritinggroup.wordpress.com / http://www.facebook.com/groups/388850977875934)
- Morgen’s Online Script Writing Group (http://scriptwritinggroup.wordpress.com / http://www.facebook.com/groups/319941328108017)
- Morgen’s Online Short Story Writing Group (http://shortstorywritinggroup.wordpress.com / http://www.facebook.com/groups/544072635605445)
We look forward to hearing your comments.