Wednesday, June 26, 2013
I have found that visiting book clubs as a guest author has been, in a word, fun! It's rewarding to get face-to-face feedback, and the club members have enjoyed getting a sneak peek into the book publishing industry. Invariably, the members are surprised how much work goes into taking a book from inception to completion.
My presentation is divided into two parts. In the first part I talk about the process of writing, editing, and rewriting. I show the club members the galley proofs and the changes I have made to the manuscript after the editing process is supposedly finished. For example, with my latest book (The Return of Cassandra Todd) I made changes right up to the last possible second. I tweak obsessively and finally have to stop reading the manuscript for fear of finding more changes I want to make.
In the second part of my presentation I discuss the book and invite comments and questions. One of the questions I'm often asked is this: How do you know when your manuscript is finally finished? I answer: A famous artist was once asked the same question regarding his paintings, and he replied, "I know a painting is finished when I walk away from it in boredom." I can relate to that.
How many of you have attended book clubs as a guest author? What has worked well for you? Any suggestions?