I know it’s been a while since my last post (not that I’ve ever been very fast at this), but a lot has happened. As you know, I had a book signing on September 14th. (Yaaay!) Not to mention the birthday party I attended the day before, and the day after the signing was equally busy, filled with random errands, a new haircut, and lots of Rock Band 3 in which I did an emo rendition of “Shout” that my sister tried to record 3 times, but I couldn’t keep from laughing.
Yeah, I’ve been real busy. Note the sarcasm.
But seriously. I have. As you know, I have another job outside of the world of writing.
You know, when I put it that way, it makes it sound like I have a corny secret identity, but you get my drift.
And now I’m sick! D8
I’ve been sick for 3 days now. Not fun. I sounded like a man on day 1, during the entire time I was at work. I told my sister that evening, “I hope I’m not sick. Only my throat hurts, and it’s messing with my voice.” I then asked her if her daughter’s been sick.
She said, “She’s been coughing, sneezing, and had a runny nose all day, but I think it’s just allergies.”
I laughed awkwardly at my sister’s response, and said, “Uh, every time you say it’s ‘just allergies,’ she ends up running a fever in 1-2 days.”
And that is the truth. However, since I have been MIA for 3 days, I don’t know if she’s been running a fever. I do hope she has only a case of nasty allergies, and that nobody catches my cold. How I got it, I’m not sure. But I really don’t care about that. I just want to get better, fast.
I hate just lying still all day, though. I feel like I need to do something, even though I don’t have the energy to, so I decided to tell you guys all about the book signing at Decopolis! (Finally!)
So I got to Decopolis at 11. William, the owner, set up a nice desk for me with an old typewrite as a display and had my books arranged in a neat way. He put up signs around the store and filled me in on the promotion he was doing that day if someone buys one of my books. It was really nice. The desk was right in front of a window by the entrance, so I had a great view of the band outside the store. The bands were really good. There was this all-girl high school band called “The Sirens” who were freakin’ amazing. The crowd loved them, as did I.
Although most people who came in passed by me without buying a book, some showed interest, and some showed only rejection. I expected the worst kind of rejection, but never expected being accused of plagiarism.
Now, if you are an aspiring writer, or are starting out as an author like I am, then I feel that you must read this part. I think it is a good way to prepare yourself for this kind of rejection, accusation, whatever you want to call it (I’m still not sure what it is, actually). Hopefully I acted as a good example of how to handle that sort of…statement. I honestly did not let it bother me while I was there. I brushed it off as just some weirdo being a weirdo. Later it dawned on me just how rude and crazy the accusation was.
Here’s what happened: One of the very first people who walked in Decopolis was a woman who I will only describe as that, because I am not looking to slander her name, or cause her any trouble. I greeted her with a smile and asked her how she was.
She asked me if there was a book signing, and I told her there was. I asked her if she would like me to sign one for her.
She acted surprised by my statement and asked if I was the author, and if those were my books. I said yes, smiling.
She then asked me what my book was about, to which I answered that it was about a girl who meets a boy who can shape-shift into a wolf. (It is way too hard to explain right off that he’s a Husky-wolf hybrid.)
“Have you read the Twilight books?” she asks me.
It’s a common question I get, seeing as I wrote a young adult fantasy/supernatural novel. I could be writing about any number if supernatural creatures and Twilight would still come up, because it has left such a huge impact on the world of literature. If I were writing about witches or wizards, or anyone with magical powers, I would be asked if I have read Harry Potter. So, her question did not offend me at all. Remember not to let those questions offend you, either. This is not what was rude, though. It gets worse.
I replied, “Oh, yeah. I read the series when I was in high school.”
“You know, there are these websites online where people communicate with each other…like a community,” she told me, struggling to explain it. “They talk about books they read and ask each other for ideas about how to write a book like that—based off of that. They do that until they have a whole book written about the other book…I don’t remember what it’s called. But they do that until they have their own book written, and then they put it on the Internet and get it published.”
I finally thought I understood what the woman was talking about. “Like fan fictions?”
Her eyes widened in recognition. “Yes, I think that’s it.”
I couldn’t help but laugh. “Oh, those are websites for fan fictions. I read a few of those a long time ago. Sadly, most of them are horrible, but there are a few good writers on there. It made me wish those weren’t fan fictions then so they could be published.” I laughed again because I couldn’t believe I was talking about fan fictions with a total stranger. It was a hilarious scenario until her next words.
The lady wasn’t laughing with me. She looked me directly in the eye except to occasionally look at my book on the table in front of her. “You know, E. L. James did that. Fifty Shades of Grey was based off of Twilight. It was a fan fiction of Twilight. She wrote it based off of Twilight…and now you’ve written this book based off of it, too.”
I was stunned. Needless to say, I wasn’t laughing anymore. I was shocked enough that she assumed I knew who E. L. James was and that I had read Fifty Shades of Grey. But to accuse me of being a copycat, as if it’s impossible for me to think for myself…?!
But I just laughed again. The whole thing was so surreal, I couldn’t help but find it funny. “Oh, no. My book isn’t based off of Twilight. I came up with the idea for it one night when I couldn’t sleep and I was listening to a song called, ‘Dogs Unleashed’. I wasn’t thinking about Twilight at all.”
She just nodded and uttered a non-committal sound and started to walk away. I bade her a nice day and she bade me good luck with my book as she walked out of the store.
I’m glad that I did find it so funny in the moment, otherwise I may have handled the situation badly. I think the best thing to do when accused of plagiarism is to just laugh it off like they’re crazy. Because they are. That’s my humble opinion, anyway.
Some people had really good things to say about my book, too. More than one person was genuinely intrigued, but I remember one woman in particular. She picked up my book and said, “Huh…I think I’ll buy one.”
She rejoined her friend, who looked at my book in her hand. “You’re going to buy one?” her friend asked, surprised.
She replied seriously, “Yeah. I think it sounds interesting.”
A couple of girls who appeared to be about my age asked what my book was about. When I told them it was about a group of shape-shifters in a small town in Alaska, she said, “That’s the perfect place for shape-shifters!”
Over all, it was a really cool experience I wouldn’t trade for anything. By the way, those two girls each bought a book and wanted their picture taken with me. I was shocked. I thought, “No way! This isn’t happening!”
And, all six books the store ordered sold by 5 o’clock! I had 3 with me just in case things went well, which I sold to William that day. Two of those books sold by 6. William jokingly asked me, “Got any more of those in your bag?”
He then asked for an order of six more, which I’m currently waiting on in the mail. Shortly after 7, the last book sold, which was actually when I was planning to leave. Everything worked out so well, I still can’t believe it. I am so blessed. I didn’t think I’d even sell 2. When I was purchasing my Alice in Wonderland mug just before I left, William said he wanted me to do another book signing, possibly on Black Friday when the Pop-Up shops open. So I will keep you guys posted on the next book signing!
I’m going to try to post pictures in this post. If it doesn’t work, the pictures are on my Facebook page.
And don’t worry guys; I have not forgotten the series of posts I planned to do! I have actually been working on the ones about each character and am working on the first trailer for Ice. Also, I am still writing the sequel to Ice, and have been working on a manuscript for a different book! I hope to publish the sequel and the other book shortly after the start of the new year. I will be starting college then, so I can’t give an exact date at this point, only a goal. As always, I will keep updating you guys, even if it take me a little while to write a post.
Until next time!
Pictures will hopefully appear here: