Thursday, August 06, 2009

On My Way to the Ball

By Nichole Giles

Time: 1:52 A.M.
Date: August 6, 2009
Reason: Because I should be in bed and refuse to succumb to exhaustion without first writing a blog.
Tomorrow’s destination: LDSBA

Today, even as you read this, friends, authors, and artists might find me at the LDS bookseller’s convention in Sandy, UT. I’ve never been to this particular gathering, but I hear it should be fun. The difference—I’m told—between this convention and others I’ve attended is that I won’t be sitting in classes and learning about my writing craft. Instead, I’ll be milling around, looking at booths and representations of all the many LDS publishing and production companies, and meeting with the authors and artists they represent.

Sounds interesting, right? And a little bit scary.

Come on, it’s always a little scary to try something new. To attempt to put myself out there and promote myself as an author—albeit a not quite published one.

I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to lots of scary things in life. Things we probably don’t want to do, but should. Like telling someone the truth, even when you know they might be angry. Or maybe standing in a room full of strangers and finding the courage to offer your hand and say, “Hi, my name is Nichole.” That’ll be me tomorrow.

And what’s more, I’ll be handing out a flier in that offered hand, and maybe a sales pitch as I attempt to get the word out about a book that won’t actually be printed until December. And I don’t love sales. But I’ll do this, because it needs to be done, and if I don’t, who else will?

That’s what it comes down to for us. If we don’t write that story in our heads, no one else will ever do it. Ever. And if we don’t suck in our fear and learn to interact with other authors, editors, and publishers, we might lose opportunities to make valuable connections that will help us along the road to publication.

What we write and how is the most important thing, but as in any other business, who you know is sometimes a close second. That’s not to say that knowing the right person will get you a big book deal or an agent, but more to say that the more people with whom you interact, the better your chances of meeting the person who could make a difference one way or another.

Or at least, that’s my hope. So, tonight, I’m going to bed because tomorrow, I’m off to the ball…er, uh, I mean convention. Now, if only I could figure out what to wear…


Keith Fisher said...

I think of it like when my daughter first walked. We put hard souled shoes on her, put her down and she started walking. She didn't hesitate, she walked like she'd been doing it forever.
She started walking at 8 months, I wonder if she would've done it sooner with the right shoes.
I use this as an example for to just step out and do it.

thanks for the blog. you've given me courage.

Carolyn V. said...

Good luck! You will do just great! You'll have to tell us how it goes.

Karlene said...

Hey, I'm headed up there today too. Even though I no longer publish, I like to keep my networks and friendships intact because you never know.

See you there. :)

Nichole Giles said...

You're right, Keith. It is sort of like learning how to walk, I guess. Luckily, I've had people holding my hands or supporting me both times. How lucky is that?

Carolyn, I'll definitely let you know!

Karlene, I'm sorry I never saw you there today. Hope you had a great time.

ali said...

This is a totally awesome post! I love, love, love it. All of us aspiring authors need to read it.

Thank you Nichole!

Nichole Giles said...

Well...uh...your welcome Ali. Glad to be of service.

You do realize you're a good example to me of the very bravery I'm talking about, don't you?


L.T. Elliot said...

How did it go, Nichole? I bet you wore something darling. You always look so stylin'.

Nichole Giles said...

Thanks for asking, L.T. It went well. I spent some time with great friends, met new authors, editors, and distributors, and even a few artists and musicians. All in all, it was a good day.

Maybe next year we can go together. Might be fun, don't you think?