I can’t sleep. I’m too worked up and am still trying to get my hyperhidrosis under control. In fact, hold on, please. I need to get up and grab a dish towel to dry off my keyboard. There we go.
Why am I worked up? Do you have certain things in life that really make you come alive? Things that make your heart beat faster, things that make you think, This is what I am alive for? Well, I do. Besides being in nature hugging trees and hand writing letters, I feel closest to God when I attend author signings. If you don’t know what an author signing is, let me enlighten you.
When an author publishes a book, he or she may go on a speaking tour to promote the book, thereby generating word of mouth to get people excited and aware of the beautiful gift that’s wrapped up inside. A book is a present you can open again and again. If you’re really lucky, sometimes an author will put on paper exactly what it is that you’ve been ruminating about. In those instances, the soul can bloom over such a connection.
Timing in life is everything. I received a galley of Eight Girls Taking Pictures by Whitney Otto about a month ago. A galley is a paperback version of a book that is soon-to-be-published. It is nearly the final version, but may contain typographical and grammatical errors. The idea is to bind the book quickly and get it out to booksellers, book buyers, and book reviewers so they can read it and move forward with purchasing it and generating word of mouth.
I wrote a book review of Eight Girls Taking Pictures and discovered the author and her editor, Whitney Frick, would be at my local independent bookstore to discuss the publication process and to read from the book. I attended the author signing tonight, and that’s why I’m so worked up and sweaty. My hands always sweat more when I’m excited. Put me in my favorite bookstore, especially when an author is there whose work I’ve read, and it’s twice as bad. So, I sat down and pulled out my galley copy and notebook to take notes. You never know when someone will make an utterance that simply must be written down. I am a copious note taker for this very reason.
I am a voracious reader. As Gustave Flaubert said, “Read in order to live.” I take that advice seriously. I would die without books. As I gingerly placed my Post-It flagged galley on my lap, it attracted some attention. Whitney the editor came over and said hello and asked where I got the galley. I explained I wrote book reviews and am a total book nerd. I even patted my book. Yep, book nerd.
I’m an introvert by nature, but when I am aligned with my passion all that shyness crap goes out the window. I totally used this as a networking opportunity and even gave her my freelance and blog business cards. She asked me what I like to read and I gave her several examples, including my purchase from this evening called The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. It’s highly recommended by Oprah, and I love me some Oprah.
The evening progressed into the author discussion and reading, and then a panel discussion followed about the publication of the book. Whitney the editor proceeded to tell the audience a little bit more about her job as an editor, and said so many things that rang true to me I had a hard time not gaping at her in astonishment.
I even spoke up when it was time for the Q & A session and mentioned the importance of enabling public comments on the author’s Facebook page. Once the Q & A was over, we all got in line to have our books signed. I scored a used copy of How to Make an American Quilt for 3 bucks that night, too, so I got both of them signed by Whitney Otto.
We all know how annoying it is to stand in line when you have hyperhidrosis. I had to wait about 5 minutes or so, and my hands would not stop sweating! I did my strategic arm fold and let my sweat soak into my long sleeves. I had already removed my scarf and shoved it in my purse so my neck could breathe. I was also holding a book bag with my new books in it. It was made of paper and had wooden handles which I turned a lovely shade of dark brown as I gripped them in anticipation of being up close and personal with an author.
It’s times like these where I will sweat and not care. I refuse to avoid encounters like this just because I have hyperhidrosis. I, too, deserve to live my life surrounded by the written word. To Whitney Otto and Whitney Frick, please ignore the part where I shook your hands and mine was wet. Totally can’t help it!
Long live REAL books. I adore hard copies.
Copyright 2012 My Life as a Puddle