"It was clear you had a lot of family members come out to support you," she said. "That's key."
What's great about that statement is that only about 12 percent of the small crowd had a blood connection. So it was awesome when a stranger observed us in a semi-natural habitat and saw a family, too.
For the record, the official family members included my sisters Donna, Nancy and Debbie; my cousin, Lori; and my niece-in-law, Shannon. They braved city traffic and drove two hours to mingle with people who have known them for years via my stories. They were more than happy to be on the story telling end of things for a change.
Eric and Tracy won the prize for longest distance, coming up from Evansville, about three-and-a-half hours away. Kirsten win, through her mother, the prize for best marketing. Her mom has bought and read all four books. She lives in Australia, so I'm officially an internationally known author.
Also attending were most of Book Club and Bunco, and even a Showgirl. People from former jobs, current clients, people who were at or in my wedding. We solidified a new friendship with folks who are new to the city and took a chance on stopping in to a room full of strangers who were at least an hour ahead of them in the drinking game.
I will admit to being terrified that no one would show up. And getting out the door with all of the books and snacks and drinks and things was a bit of a train wreck.
At one point, running late and still discussing if we had the right collection of libations, we were driving south on Keystone and slowing for a stoplight when a voice came from a motorist in the next lane.
"Sir, Sir! Something fell out of your car," said the nice woman.
We looked back. Jeff had lowered the back windows to get a little air, forgetting the back of our Subaru was stuffed to the gills. A bag had been leaning against the glass and spilled some of its contents when he lowered the window. Traffic was hopping, but Jeff jumped out to retrieve the spillage before we left a trail of snacks along Keystone Avenue.
Once we got to the store, though, it all fell into place. And people came!
Folks who couldn't attend the signing, but wanted to, reached out over the Interwebs and phone, so the crowd there was even larger emotionally than physically. Alison's French macrons and cupcakes were a huge hit, as was the array of libations the Captain was pouring.
We even sold a few books -- dozens of mine in addition to stuff from the shelves -- which was awesome because revenue generated at the store helps support the IndyReads literacy program.
I began this report with the best line, but there were many others bandied about as we essentially had a little party in the middle of the store. We even went over an hour our allotted time, which no one working at the store seemed to mind.
|The Captain got a special bartender's license so he could serve.|
"I want to meet your sisters!"
"Are you Chris from Facebook? The things you post are so funny!"
"I think I know that voice."
"Oh, my gosh, is that you? I haven't seen you in years."
"Tell me stories."
"That's the Captain."
"These macrons are stupid good."
"Are you going to read something?"
"When's the next book?"
Thanks to everyone who came or sent good vibes or messages and made it an awesome day.
|That's Meredith behind the counter and Sarah Branham (and Anderson) checking out.|
So there, along a trail at Eagle Creek Park, I pondered her question. What had I learned in the year I took to mostly focus on the thing I'd wanted to do for so long. That I could do it? That I should do more passion projects?
Yes, those things are true for me, and probably for you, too. But I think what I'm taking away mostly from this weekend is that I am truly blessed to have the family I have -- and I'm using Meredith's definition.
And now, a short note from our sponsors: