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In case any of my friends or family members actually read this Blog, please consider all Names, Characters, Places and Incidents to be the product of the author's imagination and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or locales are entirely COINCIDENTAL...Muaaah!! Now, really, about me: I bring the crazy wherever I go, so I've been told...I make fun of myself more than anyone else ever could. I hate: the awkward silence in elevators, watches with no numbers, picky eaters, Cancer and legalism. I love: coffee, stalking Hugh Jackman, my Spanx, COMMENTS, sarcasm and writing: Middle Grade, NA, YA Paranormal and Urban Fantasy.

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Insecure Writers Support Group, awkward author signings..



 
Hey Guys- Hope you all had a fantastic New Year's. I have two posts going up today,  Wednesday, January 2, 2013. You can find my usual, first Wednesday of the month, IWSG post here. If you'd like more information about the Insecure Writer's Support Group,  it's hosted by  the amazing Alex J. Cavanaugh- you can sign up and learn more here: - http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com/p/the-insecure-writers-support-group.html

I'm also posting my entry to the 4th Annual "No Kiss" Blogfest hosted by the fabulous Miss Frankie Diane Mallis. Please bear with me this month as it may take me a little while to hop around and visit/comment on both. Thanks- and happy hopping!

On Friday, December 21st,  instead of  sitting around waiting for the world to end,  I chose to go to an author signing at my local library. The author was none other than Brat Pack actor/director turned travel writer-  Andrew McCarthy.
Andrew McCarthy, my sis Adrienne-all smiles because she lurves him, ME, crazy lady who jumped in my pic! *true story*

Now, most of my followers of a certain age (like me) would probably remember  Andrew McCarthy best from his appearances in some classic 80's movies such as: Less Than Zero, Pretty in Pink, Class, St. Elmo's Fire, Weekend  at Bernie's, Mannequin..look him up on IMDB. He has quite an impressive resume. But he didn't write a biography. And he wasn't there to talk about his acting career. Andrew McCarthy, has become a travel writer, and a very talented one at that.

I didn't expect to like his travel writing all that much, but after reading his book, "The Longest Way Home" was pleasantly surprised at how much I actually did. If I had to compare it to something else current, it was like the male equivalent of "Eat Pray Love".  And guess what friends? Believe it or not, McCarthy could be an honorary member of the IWSG.

Mr. McCarthy is very candid about having to push past crippling fear, insecurity and shyness. He is a loner by nature and hates crowds.  He attributes  traveling alone to far off places that helped him mature and grow, eventually stretching him to move beyond those fears.

McCarthy's travel experiences combined with his honest, heart felt accounts of  his inner turmoil including the push and pull of wanting to be home, yet yearning and needing to travel, really spoke to me. Other people in the audience, not so much.

The man was there to talk about his new book. He was excited about his first book being published, as any new author would be. But I guess to some people, when you are a movie star, they will never see you as anything but. I felt sorry for McCarthy, as he had several "Brat Pack" groupies in the audience who made the Q&A section of his signing,  all kinds of  awkward. He dealt with them very graciously, but it was obvious they never read his book and had zero intentions of doing so. They were just there to have their "Pretty In Pink" posters and  DVD's signed.  Which was a shame, if you ask me.

My experience has left me curious. So now I must ask all of you-  have any of you gone to an awkward author signing? Have you experienced any questions that were wildly inappropriate or  threw you for a loop?  Anyone ever encounter any hecklers or haters in the audience? And, my IWSG brothers and sisters, do you dread even the thought of doing your own author signing or are you the type who would relish in them?

36 comments:

  1. I've never been to any author signings lol, but when someone makes a drastic turn in career they'll always get people coming to see them because of what they did before. When I went to see Fozzy, several people were there to see Chris Jericho the wrestler, not Chris Jericho, lead singer of a rock band. I guess that's just the way it goes!

    P.S On New Year's Eve, Hugh Jackman was on the Graham Norton Show in the UK, I thought you might want to watch! :D http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3R9TcRzW6IA

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    1. Have I told you lately that I lurve you? LOL Thanks for the link Kyra!

      Yes, it's unfortunate, but I guess that's the way it goes. Because some people are all kinds of talented, and can accomplish many things well.

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  2. Oh ho, at almost every single author signing I've attend there is some wack job asking totally inappropriate questions. I always sigh and pray the author has the social chops to handle it. I once even saw staff from the Tattered Cover in downtown Denver move in to intervene if the offending party didn't knock it off.

    As for me, I have tons of experience negotiating tricky situations with off balance people. Hopefully it won't fail me when I need it!

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    1. If I ever get myself a book deal/published, and I am having a signing, I swear I will be bringing back up. Because if anyone came at me heckling, I would probably run away- crying!!

      Thanks for the comment and follow Rebecca- And welcome to the Bird's Nest!

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  3. I've never been to a signing and can't even picture getting a book published let alone signing one for someone. I'm glad you got to experience this with McCarthy and that he was down to earth like the rest of us. It's a shame there were people there who didn't even bother to read his book though. I'm glad he handled it with style and grace.

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    1. It was really a shame because seriously, he's a wonderful writer. And a VERY good speaker, despite his shyness.. My hope is they will buy his book in the future, or at the very least, check out his stories in Nat Geo. They are fabulous!

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  4. I've actually never been to a book signing at all! That sucks, actually. There just aren't many around here. :(

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    1. Aw, I know I've said it before but girl- I REALLY wish you lived closer! I would be dragging you out/around to everything book related with me!!!

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  5. Good for him for tackling something new.
    Real signings scare me. I'm not good with crowds.

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    1. He's really great at it too! And Alex, I bet you would do better than you think. Don't sell yourself short!

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  6. Never been to an awkward author signing, but that's probably because I've hardly been to any signings in general! I definitely dread the thought of doing my own signing someday, though. I feel way too shy for something like that!

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    1. I really love getting to meet my favorite authors. But I love meeting new people in general. And one day, I think it would be amazing to meet people who read one of my books. It is something I would like to add on my bucket list. Crazy seems to follow me, so I would just have to be prepared for any shenanigans from the audience, LOL

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  7. That's a great story. Thanks for sharing. Awesome that he's writing and is human. I almost met him once. He was filming a movie (a bad one no one has heard of - I can't remember the title, something about horses) at the amusement park I was working at when I was a teen. He did seem kind of normal from a distance. :)

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    1. I have to say, Andrew McCarthy was lovely! Quite entertaining and very interesting to listen to. I would have liked more time to hear him share even more about his travels, but he was only slotted to speak for an hour. Which passed all too quickly, for me.

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  8. One lady asked me why she should bother reading my book. The question was okay, but her aggressive behavior was startling. At another reading a man asked me if I knew I was going to hell. Another reading a man said how could I live with myself after overcharging for my book. Haha. I tried to explain that the publisher set the price and his reply was to walk away.

    Great story. We need to be reminded that these stars are real people too.

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    1. Holy moly Joylene! You have some of the best stories I ever heard- oh my gosh- what the h did you say/do? How do you conduct yourself professionally, when the audience is that full of crazy? LOL

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  9. Awesome. I remember him. It's great to meet authors and hear their stories. Thanks.

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    1. He really was great. Although he was in a ton of movies in the 80's he now only acts occasionally, but has moved on to mainly directing and travel writing. He has a great sense of humor and is a very interesting story teller!

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  10. Of course I remember him!! Who could forget. I sort of have mixed feelings about people asking him to sign their Pretty in Pink dvds. In part, his past notoriety might have helped him get the current book deal. That's an assumption that I've made without reading the book and might be unfair, but I do think if you trade in on past success then there might be some of that sort of awkwardness that comes with it.

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    1. I see your point about the past notoriety helping him out, and I have to say, he was very happy/gracious about signing whatever people shoved at him, but I kind of felt bad. Because he really is a great writer. I'm jealous. Wish I had multiple talents!

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  11. Awkward signings? You bet! Far more than I cared for, too. Overall, it was usually a writer pumping me for information with no interest in buying any of my books that bugged me the most.

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    1. Ugh, Diane, I'm learning they are far more common that I had thought! Not cool.

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  12. I've never been to a signing so I can't comment. I'll have to keep my eyes open for one round here.

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    1. Hey Suzanne! You should try and go. I love to meet the authors of my fav books, and pick their brains/ask them questions about their work. Although, I'd like to think I ask intelligent, appropriate questions, and would never make someone feel awkward on purpose!

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  13. I know I'll have to do some signings eventually. I'm not quite there yet, but the thought of doing one already makes me nervous. I'm not good at being teh center of attention, so I guess I should start practicing now. I don't want to think about hecklers because they'll just make my axiety worse. Happy New Year!

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    1. Happy New Year to you too Michael! Hecklers, a/k/a mean people, stink. But I think, (for the most part), readers are a respectful lot. And I'm sure when the time comes, you'll do just fine!!

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  14. I write for kids so if I ever get the chance for an author signing, I think it will be such a blast. Kids come up with quirky, fun, and often insightful questions. The teacher and mom part of me is also glad I write for kids. I'm used to them.

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    1. Oh, I agree Barbara!! If I were to choose, kids would win over adults every day of the week! They are an awesome audience. I teach two year olds now(for Sunday School) and have also taught teenagers for years as a Youth Group leader and I love both of those age groups the best. They never fail to keep it real. Teenagers, I find, are dying for someone (other than their parents) to open up to. And when they do, whoah. So much emotion pours out. And two year olds are flat out hil-a-ri-ous! Love them.

      Thanks so much for stopping in and commenting.

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  15. I want to read this book. Not been to many author signings and never an awkward one. Personally, I would rather put needles in my eyes than do one.

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    1. Oh Faraway- you should go buy this book, you would luurve it. And I bet you would totally relate to a lot of what he has to say. He is a HUGE travel advocate. He even signed his book, "Travel On". LOL

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  16. I've been to a few author signings, and they went well, although I felt awkward and geeky in saying hi to the author and asking the person to sign the book. I'd probably be awkward at my own. LOL!

    Sounds like a great book, though!

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    1. Oh, I always go all fan girl and stupid! That's just how I roll. LOL

      I bet you would be cooler than you think, Cherie, at your own though. I can only hope to one day be at my own- and hopefully, not have it go straight to my head, and I come away thinking I'm some kind of rock star or something...Bahahaa! (Yeah, right! LOL)

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  17. I've never been to a signing. Is that totally horrible since I'm a writer?? haha. i guess I should support my fellow authors...

    Happy new Year!

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    1. You should go Kelley! They are so fun. Except when some people make it awkward. LOL

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  18. OMG, I know who that is. LOL. That sounds like a fantastic time. Happy 2013!

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    1. It was Ciara! We had a ton of fun and his book was really quite good.

      Happy New Year to you too!

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