Monday, January 30, 2012

Barnes and Noble's Launch of Tamed

Last weekend I had my book launch for Tamed at Barnes and Noble. Here are some final numbers. (Remember, this was a launch party and not just a signing so I sold a lot more books than at a typical signing.) Barnes and Noble had 60 copies of Tamed and 30 copies of Epertase. Out of those 60 copies of Tamed I sold 57 and 11 copies of Epertase. This is the perfect example of what marketers call your front end selling your back end. Thank you to everyone who made it and to everyone who has supported me. This is my familamidy.
This is a bottle of Wine that my aunt brought in celebration.
Book Buyers
More book buyers

Monday, January 23, 2012

NBC4 and Tamed

As many of you have probably seen, either on TV or from the internet, I had the opportunity to be interviewed on Columbus, Ohio's number 1 weekend morning show last weekend for my book Tamed. I thought it would be fun to talk about the experience here on my blog. I have to admit that I was fairly nervous in the days leading up to the interview as I have never been much of a public speaker. It isn't that I don't have the confidence as much as that I sometimes have trouble controlling my body's reaction in such situations. I don't mean I curl up into a ball on the floor or anything, just that sometimes my face gets red, or I get a little winded, or I can't get my thoughts out like I had hoped. So, it was that knowledge that gave me the most anxiety leading up to the day of the interview. On Saturday morning I climbed out of bed at 5:15 AM. I got a short workout in, hoping to burn some nervous energy. After my workout and a shower, I made some scrambled eggs while my wife did whatever women do to get ready. We arrived at NBC's studio at 7:45 AM. The first thing that struck me was how empty and quiet the studio appeared from the outside. A producer let us in and led us through the station to the studio. Anchor Marshall McPeek was already there, waiting to go on and Mindy Drayer, his morning co-host, hadn't yet arrived. My wife and I introduced ourselves and talked with Mr. McPeek for a few minutes. The calm demeanor of the small staff helped me to relax a bit. When I say small staff, I mean 5, 6 people tops running the whole operation. I was surprised to find no camera men as Mr. McPeek explained that they had been replaced a few years ago by robotic cameras ran by a single man from a control desk. Mindy Drayer arrived a few minutes before air time and we spoke briefly before she went on. My wife and I watched the show from just off camera while we waited. During the commercial before my segment, I went to my seat and attached the mic to my shirt. I was surprised that I didn't feel as overly nervous as I had expected and can only attribute my calmness to the relaxing atmosphere, the friendliness of everyone there, and my wife supporting me from a few feet away.
Mindy sat in the chair next to me and we chatted until they returned from the commercial. Mindy is a pro and a skilled interviewer in every sense of the word. She made me feel comfortable from the get-go, asked great questions, and steered me in the right direction so I wouldn't ramble. I felt she was the perfect person for my first TV interview. Even though there were cameras and bright lights shining on me (glistening off of my balding head, I might add) I forgot they were even there within seconds. I found myself engaged in my conversation with Mindy which further points to her talent as an interviewer. The first thing I did when the segment was over and the cameras were off (after thanking Mindy, of course) was look to my wife for some sense of how I did. She held up two thumbs and mouthed "perfect" which removed the weight from my shoulders. As we prepared to leave, Mindy called over from her news desk and said she had just received a message from someone who said they bought my book before the interview was even over. That made me feel pretty good. My wife and I said good-bye and headed for home. My publisher and I kept our eyes on my Amazon rankings for the rest of the day. My kindle ranking hit 5,324 which is by far the lowest I have ever ranked. And that's with the book's official release not being until Thursday. Rhemalda let me know that Tamed was doing pretty good for the Nook as well, but the rankings weren't showing up for some reason. (Rhemalda can tell exact numbers of ebooks sold as they happen.) All in all I would say this experience was near the top of many exciting experiences I have had since Rhemalda decided to give my books a chance. My cousin always tells me that doing things that make you uncomfortable helps a person grow. I remind myself of that each time I am doing something that makes me uncomfortable which is part of what keeps me going. And you know what? My cousin is right. My mother was baby-sitting my six-year-old son at the time and she said that when my interview started, he went over and kissed the TV. How sweet is that? So, thanks again NBC4 and especially Mindy Drayer for giving me such a wonderful opportunity. I had a blast. Now go and watch the video and see if you can find the one instance that I felt I wasn't able to hide my nerves very well. It's subtle. I know you will probably find about twenty. And don't point to the entire interview either. That's just not fair. ;) Amazon

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Add One Book and Subtract Two Teeth and You Get One Happy Kid

Here I was working at the firehouse while my wife and son were at home spending a nice Saturday afternoon together. My son's two front teeth had been loose for a few days and one of them had come out while he was sleeping the night before. He was so excited that he ran into our room at five in the morning to let us know. He said, and I quote, "Dad, my tooth came out while I was sleeping. I felt it in my bed and thought it was a hard booger. But it was my tooth." So, back to my afternoon at the firehouse. After returning from a working fire, I received the following texts from my wife. "All gone daddy!! One minute later ... "It's here." And this is the picture she sent me. This was the first time I had seen my new book, Tamed, as a finished product (along with my son without teeth).
That's how two missing teeth plus one new book equals one happy kid.