I make no secret of the fact I'm a bookseller at a chain bookstore (THE best chain bookstore in the UK, of course *insert winking face here*) as a way of feeding my book obsession and funding my writing career. I absolutely love it.
On the writing side of things, I'm with an independent publisher called Crooked Cat and my second novel is released this Friday (hurrah!).
When I tell people these facts, I'm confronted with the same reaction:
"Ooh! That's handy isn't it? Working in a bookstore when you've written a book?!"
The (sometimes bitter) truth is the two are not linked as much as one would think. The massive behemoth that is the chain bookstore is sometimes powerless when trying to stock a book that's published independently. I understand the difficulties, of course. My book is affiliated with a massive online tour-de-force that...well...isn't really popular with a lot of bookshops on the high street. Quite rightly so, but I'll refrain from wading in on the online retailer versus the high street debate. Something about biting the hand that feeds you...
What I'm trying to emphasise in this post is my occasional conflict and frustration at not being able to introduce the two, throw in a rum and coke, and pray they hit it off.
It's not like both sides aren't willing. They absolutely are but times are hard even for the bigger publishers, let alone independents when it comes to getting books stocked in bookstores. It seems simple from the outside but it unfortunately isn't.
So, I spend everyday selling other peoples books. It's a lovely way to make a living but would I like to perhaps include my own book in that mix? Of course I would.
Last week saw the amazingly talented Joe Hill visit the store and, being the fan-girl that I am, I greeted him in the only way I know how, as you'll see in the pic! It was an absolute honour to see him in action with his fans. He was enthusiastic and spent time with everyone, signing books and posing for pictures. I was literally a kid on Christmas morning and I felt like I had the best job in the world. Where else could I meet my book heroes? It was absolutely priceless.
As I watched Joe chatting with one of his fans about their favourite books, the writer part of me couldn't help but wonder whether I might be sat in that chair someday. And whether I'll be confronted with fans dressed up as the little Liberty Connor.
I do hope so. Just need to keep dreaming big.
|Me and Joe Hill!|