First, I had a great book signing at Barnes and Noble on June 4th.  I met many wonderful writers and readers.  I think I talked more about books I had read than the books I wrote.  This is the advantage of having a table next to the YA Sci-Fi/Fantasy section.  All in all, very fun.  (I even sold a few books, too!)

Next, what does it mean to sign a book?

Sometimes, I merely sign my name.  These books go to a general pile of books (my parents’ house), to be sold to any interested reader.

Sometimes, I personalize the book with the reader’s name and add a general note.  I say things like, “Enjoy!” or “Happy Birthday!” and almost always a “God bless!”  Basically, lots of exclamation points and not ver specific.  These books go to people I just met or don’t know very well (like coworkers’ daughters).

Sometimes, I write a message to the reader, who is a friend I know decently well.  One of these went to my brother for his wedding last week.  My friend bought a book last month, and I was able to write a nerdy note about our conversation (what makes a square a cube?).  I started these with, “thanks for being a great friend!” and such lines, but those are born from panic and my inability to think well on the run.  Now, I hope they’re getting more and more personal and unique.  An author has to be good at writing 30-word notes, not just 300-page novels.

My mother deserves credit for making me think past just writing my signature.  Last year, she bought my first book.  I signed it.  She found it on the counter and said something like, “This can’t be my book.”

Me:  “Why not?  You bought it.”

“It doesn’t say, ‘To the greatest Mom.’ ”

An epiphany hit me, then!  I should write notes in my books!  (And I did add a note in my mother’s book.)  I had met Hilari Bell when I was young, and she wrote a note to me (“Fall into a good book,” in her Fall of a Kingdom novel).  Plus, she didn’t even know me.  If she could do that, I could try.

So, if you meet me and want to buy a book from me, I will personalize it.  It’ll probably be with a pink marker, too, because pink is awesome.

Book Signatures

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