Close to Home: Signing Charlotte in Southern Illinois


Hugh's BNpic



I spent all last week on the couch, desperately trying to be well for my Saturday signing at the Carbondale Barnes & Noble. (Turned out I have a sinus infection that’s now, finally, almost mended.) The wonderful Heidi Houghton, from the store, had been working hard to set up a horror event for months, and I didn’t want to miss it. It was also SIUC’s Homecoming, so I wasn’t sure what sort of turnout to expect. Weather? A little misty and cool. Folks were worried about it raining during the game later in the day.

It turned out to be a terrific event. Met lots of new folks, and was thrilled to have so many Bliss House fans who were ready for Charlotte’s Story. Hugh Williams was the other author signing there. We didn’t actually have a panel–but we did do a LOT of talking with readers. (Hugh had a blue million folks come by. I think BN might be his bookstore office! Also, he took the poster pic. I totally forgot because I was apparently too busy taking selfies.)



After learning that not so many readers are fans of ghost stories, I kept up my informal research. Only about half the readers who approached the table (okay, some of them I waved over with promises of candy) are interested in books with supernatural plots. I still find that surprising.

Here are some folks who don’t mind the scary: Jon Tribble and Allison Joseph are uber-poets, good friends, and lovely people. Don’t they have nice, non-maniacal smiles?



This is Paula, whom I see regularly at her job. It was so fun to have her come and see me at work!




I learned Kelli Jo Calvert does theater in her spare time. I took my son to see the play she was stage-managing locally–Agatha Christie’s The Unexpected Guest–the very next day. We had a blast.



Shane Vickers always tells me great stories. I was thrilled to discover that my husband already had already put Pathfinder, a film Shane recommended, on our hard drive. Also, we are both big Viking fans. (Nordic, not Minnesota-ish. You know my totem is Viking Barbie, right?)



I put this up on Facebook this weekend, but here are the remains of the Smarties I had out at the table. Hrothgar found my travel bag. He’s so naughty.

Next up: Wednesday night reading/chat/signing at Left Bank Books in St. Louis!



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