I joined four other mystery authors yesterday to participate in a panel and discussion at the Barnes and Noble Centerra in Loveland, Colorado. We managed to attract a few mystery readers to our tables to chat about our own books and mysteries in general, pass out our bookmarks and other promotional materials, and share the chocolate. It's a rare signing when I don't have a bowl of Hershey's Kisses sitting out to lure the readers a little closer.
When I first began to do these signings in 2007, I was very shy about approaching people. Braver now, I often walk through the mystery section of a bookstore or catch customers as they walk in the door, hand out bookmarks, and invite them to stop by the signing table to chat. I usually mention that there's no obligation to buy, that we just love the chance to talk to readers about books, getting published, book promotion, or any other subject they're interested in.
One reader wanted to talk about blogging. Another gave me a hard sell on the Twilight series, which I have not read yet since I have this (apparently) unreasonable dislike of vampires (also werewolves and zombies).
The super CRM at Barnes and Noble Centerra, Vivian Tapp, took this picture of the group toward the end of our two-hour event.
From left to right, we are Coloradoans Charlotte Hinger (Deadly Descent), Patricia Stoltey (The Prairie Grass Murders and The Desert Hedge Murders), Cricket McRae (Lye in Wait, Heaven Preserve Us, and Spin a Wicked Web), Mike Befeler (Retirement Homes Are Murder and Living With Your Kids is Murder), and former Coloradoan now living in Wyoming Tony Hayden (The River's Edge and Jaded Honor).
Learn more about Charlotte Hinger tomorrow on my Colorado author Monday.