Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Road Trip and More Just Ahead!

This week has been moving fast, with a bunch of meetings and a whole lot of activity on book and movie fronts. I got back late Sunday night from the road trek to Tennesee and Arkansas. Missed the Superbowl, but didn't mind, as the trip was well worth it!

First of all, I wanted to thank everyone that came out to the book signings and test screenings that took place.

Memphis was wonderful. From an afternoon visit with Dan and Jackie Gamber (and Ellen and Ben!), to the Davis-Kidd signing, to the test screening of Swordbearer, it was a great way to kick things off. Jackie, of course, is a fellow SSP author, and I got to see the writing studio where she works her literary magic. The reissue of her book Redheart is right on the horizon, which I am really looking forward to.

The Davis-Kidd visit was very enjoyable. Got to give a full presentation and giveaways, and we had a very spirited audience. Davis-Kidd is truly my home in Memphis.

The test screening of Swordbearer that night was at Studio on the Square, a really nice venue in Memphis. Had a pretty decent turnout, and got some excellent feedback that will help us shore things up for the ConNooga screening coming up on February 20th. Overall, the reaction seemed to be very positive. Didn't seem like there were any burning fires. We even had the honor of having the film reviewer from the Commercial Appeal as part of the audience!

Overnight I stayed at Thran Keep, otherwise known as David Blalock's house. David and his wife Maria are too kind to me! I had a very restful visit, and felt pretty good as we headed out for Arkansas the following morning.

Of course, more snow and ice had to hit, catching us a little on the drive in and a lot more later that evening. The event in Clarksville was the Redgunk Festival, spearheaded by Dr. William Eakin at the University of the Ozarks. I ended up doing a reading, talked a little about epic fantasy and my work, and manned an exhibit in the hallway. We did another test screening of Swordbearer for a primarily student audience. Collected more feedback that both corroborated what we heard from the Memphis crowd as well as got some new insights that were also very helpful.

Want to give a shout out to Sheila at the hotel there, who ended up getting my two Rising Dawn Saga books! It was a great way to start my Clarksville visit.

We went back from Clarksville to Memphis, where I made a second visit to Thran Keep for the night. As always, tremendous hospitality and a restful night! We headed out for Nashville in the morning for a stop at Borders on the West End. We had a nice group in Nashville, and I gave a presentation, giveaways, and did a reading. Got to see some wonderful friends, made some new ones (thanks Jeff!) and even had visits by some author friends like Nick Valentino and Eric Wilson. David Blalock made the trek as well, and I am amazed he wasn't sick of me yet after putting up with me for the three previous days! LOL

I really hope that Borders is able to start doing some small press events now that there's a void to be filled with the closing of the Davis-Kidd location in Nashville. They do such a wonderful job with book events, the location is great, and the Sales Manager there is really fantastic to deal with.

There were some books remaining at both Davis-Kidd in Memphis and the Borders West End in Nashville. I encourage people in those areas, who are wanting to get my books, to please support these two stores and get the books there.

After the Borders event I made the trek back to Lexington, arriving just in time for the last few seconds of the Super Bowl. A bit tired from all the road traveling, but 5 events in 4 days in 3 cities were completed fairly smoothly! It was a good start to touring for 2011, and I am looking forward to ConNooga in Chattanooga on February 18th, which kicks off six straight road weekend with MystiCon, Metropolis SuperCon, Troy Book Lover's Festival, Millennicon, and MidSouthCon to follow.

I'll get some pics up, but wanted to be sure to get this post up before the week got away from me!

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