aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Even Tess Gerritsen gets no respect

I read this on Tess Gerritsen's blog. She is a New York Times best selling author. [Full disclosure: and the publisher puts a lot of marketing muscle behing her to be sure she stays that way. You should see the press packets and emails I get for her new books.] You would think that would get you some respect, some recognition. But millions more people go to see a crappy movie than ever pick up a book.
Anyway, she wrote:

" But there were also the constant reminders of just how tough a business novel-writing is. A number of the small independent stores I dropped in on didn’t carry MEPHISTO CLUB — or any of my backlist. Nor did they seem inclined to ever carry my books. Their shelves were stocked instead with literary titles and trade paperbacks. It reminded me of my earlier days trying to find respect as a romance author. Thriller writers face the same challenges.

"And yes, there were the usual incidents that reminded me of my place in the publishing world. Bookstore clerks who said: “What’s your name again?” “I don’t know if we carry your books.” “Do you write fiction
or non-fiction?”

"But the incident that stands out happened on my trip home, on the very last day of tour. I was happy to find a stack of MEPHISTO CLUB in an airport bookstore, and the clerk gave me permission to sign them. As I was autographing the copies, a customer came up to me.

“Are you the author?” he asked.

“Why yes,” I said, hoping he’d be impressed and might even want to buy a book.

“Hey honey!” the man calls out to his wife. “This lady wrote a book and she’s signing them.”

"By this point, I was already opening a copy to the title page, ready to inscribe a personal note to my brand new reader.

"Then he added: “Maybe these signed books will be worth something someday. If she ever gets famous.” And he laughed and walked away.
Been there, done that - but I'm not a NYT besteselling author!

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