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A day in the life of a trails book author


Ever wondered what it’s like to be a trails book author? Well, here our writer Sue Kittow reveals all about a day or, to be more accurate, several events in her life as she promotes her latest book, Walks in the Footsteps of Daphne du Maurier.

The first event was my book launch, held at Falmouth Art Gallery - a lovely light and bright space which has the added advantage that people can wander round and look at the paintings. Several people admitted that they’d never even been to the gallery before and were very keen to visit again, so that was a bonus.

Benoath Cove

Presenting your book to the public for the first time is always an emotional and nerve-wracking business, to say nothing of organising wine and soft drinks and carting enough books down to the venue! But the launch was well attended - despite the fact that it was a very sunny day, so some people came straight from the beach! - and I sold enough books to make it worthwhile. Some of us then went off for something to eat; by the time we got our food I was nearly asleep, but it was a memorable evening and I went to bed feeling my book was well christened.

Next I was due at Waterstones in Truro for a book signing. I have learned, over the years, not to expect the crowds that better known authors might draw! It also helps to bribe friends to come along and at least say hello, if not buy books, and, thankfully, several friends did just that. I also met some lovely customers but generally it was a quiet day as, being the start of half term and sunny, many people were either travelling or on the beach). It’s easy to feel extremely vulnerable sitting in a bookstore in front of a pile of your books with everyone avoiding you - or so it seems!

View from Gribben

After that I did two ‘Meet the author’ sessions at the Great Estate festival. The first started with virtually no audience, but a few people trickled in and one lady bought two books and said she found my talk fascinating, so that cheered me no end. The following day a lady who’s just set up a new bookshop and has bought some of my books came along, as did various other people. Although I didn’t sell any books, we had a fascinating discussion about books, writing, depression and creative writing degrees, and I was asked about giving some workshops in the future.

All in all, it was really heart warming to talk to other readers and writers and learn about the kind of thing they need help with and are interested in doing. I came away feeling really inspired and I felt so lucky to love my job. The reality of being a writer can be hard and solitary, but this festival showed how important it is to connect with our fellow readers and writers as much as we can!

Sue’s book, Walks in the Footsteps of Daphne du Maurier is out now, as are her previous Cornwall walking books Walks in the Footsteps of Winston Graham’s Poldark and Discover Cornwall.

Created On  2 Aug 2018 11:09  -  Permalink


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