Last weekend Dawn and I went to Los Angeles to exhibit at the L.A. Times Festival of Books. It’s the largest book festival in the country; after over two decades, it has outgrown its original venue, and has turned into quite an enormous sprawl of booths. It was pretty epic, and very exciting, to see how many folks came out to flood the USC campus where it was held. It rained on Saturday, the second rainfall the festival has ever had, and it was no brief sprinkle. Many exhibitors scrambled to rearrange their booths to keep their things from getting wet, and we were no exception. Luckily, no damage was done…and we learned a little about making our booth more inviting as well. Thanks, rain.
As a result of the festival, Mister ‘I write a thousand words every day’ (that’s me) missed some days. Four, to be exact. That’s a day to drive there, two full days at the festival, and a day to drive home. And here’s the thing: it was all about my books! It was hard to feel bad posting on Twitter with #TodayIAmNotAWriter when each post came at the end of a long day of promoting the books I have already written. You know?
So I thought maybe I should come up with a new hashtag to post, something that could point out the days that I am doing so much to get my books out there more that I don’t have time to write. I think maybe when we do a festival, or some other all-day activity that is all about my books, I will post a new hashtag. On those days, it will be #TodayIAmAnAuthor instead of #TodayIAmAWriter, along with less than 140 characters about why I am an author today. Sound good? Good.
Now don’t get me wrong: I am still taking my writing goals seriously. The cool thing, if you do the math, is that even the minimum of 1000 words a day adds up pretty fast. Assume that I won’t write for sixty-five days this year, just for easier multiplication: that’s still 300,000 words in a year. When you factor in the other twenty or fifty or eighty words that show up every day, account for what I like to call ‘cheat days’, get realistic about how many days I’ll actually probably miss, and cut out all the words that will inevitably get cut out…well, you still have a lot of content, my mathematical friend. And that’s good news for everyone. When I want a lazy day, or just don’t arrange my schedule well, I’ll still post my shameful old hashtag; the rest of the time I’ll stick with these two.
The other reason I want to start doing this is because we plan to do more things to get my books into more hands. These book festivals are an awesome way to put readers and authors in touch with each other, and we plan to put more on the calendar each year while keeping the ones we enjoyed in the rotation. The L.A. Times Festival of Books can expect to see us back next year, and we look forward to meeting more cool folks when we do. If we already met you this year, that’s even better! Stop by again next year so we can stay caught up. We’ll have more titles every year, and we want to get the chance to watch you grow as well!
That’s all for now. Happy Friday, and thanks again for all the support over the long festival weekend. It felt like there were a lot of folks there with us, lending their support and good thoughts; we appreciate it!
Thanks for reading!