Recently, an important bookseller commented on liking to plan events for authors they know will draw a crowd, even for their first book launch. And I was surprised by my own internal reaction to the discussion, because I know—absolutely—that regardless of what my book is about, or who publishes it, or what is the intended target audience of my work, people will come.
This is not me having a big ego or thinking a lot of myself (quite the contrary). This is me having confidence in the people who are important to me, and who I absolutely believe will be there for me—to support me—not just because they’re my fans, but because they either love me, or because I have shown up to support them. The very idea is truly, unbelievably humbling.
I have an enormous family. Seriously, huge. If I were to plan an event and even 25% of my family members were able to come, that would = a crowd.
But it’s not just about my family. There are people who are not related to me, who are my friends. True and loyal friends, in whose lives and/or careers I have become emotionally invested. Sometimes this means spreading myself thin, or driving long distances, or donating time, money, and other services or goods. Sometimes it means staying out late to lend a shoulder, or encouraging someone who needs a boost, or meeting an out of town friend for cupcakes and chatter. The point is, as my grandmother, and then my parents taught me, this is what it is to be a true friend. And because my friends matter to me, I believe I matter to them.
So when the bookseller talked about planning events for authors who can bring a crowd, I smiled, nodded, and thought, yeah, okay. I’m totally launching my next book here. Because I have the best friends and family in the world, and if I plan it, they will come.
I might not be able to talk without bawling, but the day is coming, peeps. Count on it. And you’re all invited.