Stand In Front of People and Read. No Pressure!


Johannes Jansson

John Scalzi has an interesting post up about Author Events and audience turnout:

… it happens to every writer. Ask nearly any writer who has done an event, and they will tell you a tale of at least one of their events populated by crickets and nothing else. Yes, even the best sellers. And here’s the thing about that: Even with the best sellers, it’s an event often in the not-too-recent past. Every time you do an event, you roll the dice. Sometimes you win and get a lot of people showing up. Sometimes you lose and you spend an awkward hour talking to the embarrassed bookstore staff. Either way, you deal with it, and then it’s off to the next one.

Yikes! No fun!

I’ve been to a few readings and they’re pretty cool, but I don’t know how I’d do at one if I were in the spotlight. I tend to make jokes nobody laughs at when in front of big crowds. (Like that one time when I told a joke and the utter silence of the large room was broken by the solitary laughter of my husband.That’s why we’re married, baby.)

The only other experience I have is teaching high school classes and adult education classes. In both of those situations I had some control of the room so who knows what those people actually thought of me. If someone put me in front of an event and said, “entertain everyone!” I might just defecate a small rock. (For that image: you’re welcome.)

So here’s to hoping that all future social situations go smoothly for me!

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