In June, I donated a stack of books to a silent auction in support of Fetch A Cure. Along with the books, I agreed to visit the book club/group that won the books at their convenience for a Q&A. I had the pleasure of meeting the group this week. What a nice night with a great group of people!
There is nothing more gratifying for an author than to have readers speak of the characters you have created as real people, as friends or enemies, as living beings they know well. Of course, one of the best ways to make this happen is to visit book clubs. Early in the meeting, I confessed how much I love my protagonist, George (p.s. he’s not always so lovable). Most of the group felt the way I did and had specific feelings and reactions to the rest of the characters. As another added bonus, their questions were both insightful and curious. I’ve been very lucky to speak at quite a few book clubs in Richmond and D.C., but this was certainly one of my favorites! Thanks so much to the folks from The Pediatric Connection for having me as their guest!
Writing novels is often such a solitary endeavor. Authors may interact with each other online and when doing research, but the work itself is done in our heads and on our keyboards. Feedback comes in the form of reviews and sales but book clubs and readings really put you in touch with the very people you are writing for. I encourage all authors to visit book clubs whenever possible.
Also, don’t be shy about donating your books and your time. There are so many organizations that would welcome your participation. It’s a wonderful thing to give in support of a good cause. As a fringe benefit, you will meet your readers. It’s a win win!!