Monday, July 27, 2009

Lessons for a newbie author

Having my first children's book published has been a learning experience in lots of ways. Some of the things I've discovered:
  1. Amazon rankings are the work of the devil. They change wildly, mean very little and are highly addictive. I just checked the current sales ranking for Maggie's Monkeys and it is #329,313. Its high was #2,120 just after it was a Daily Candy book club suggestion. (Apparently as few as 50 sales can cause an enormous bump in rankings. Some authors reportedly have attempted to orchestrate such a bump.) Not that I've been keeping track of rankings. That would be so beneath me.
  2. Messing up the inscription at a book signing isn't the end of the world. My friend Dave at Blue Marble Children's Bookstore eased my embarrassment immediately, having me put a line through the botched name and add the words, "Even authors make mistakes." Thanks, Dave. (And when someone leaves a book for you to sign with a note about what the inscription should say, do they expect you to write exactly what they wrote?)
  3. There are a lot of little boys named Aidan. And a lot of ways to spell it.