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March 12 * Guest Speaker- Indianapolis Civil War Roundtable
Dave Sutherland was my contact for the
Indianapolis talk. We've been communicating for some time
leading up to my March 12 appearance, and I wanted to do as
good as I could for this large roundtable group.
Unfortunately, I never know what I'm going to say until I
get up in front of the crowd and start talk. Fortunately, I
think I did well judging from the reaction.
Before the talk, Dave took me to the New York deli in downtown Indianapolis, Shapiro's. The deli sandwiches at Shapiro's approximate the girth of New York style sandwiches. As usual, I was too nervous to eat much. Luckily, I saved half the sandwich and ate it later at the hotel room. There was a group of roundtable members eating at the deli before the meeting, which was helpful in loosening the atmosphere.
The talk was at the Indianapolis Historical Society. Before the talk several people came up to me and we discussed everything from the Mississippi Marine Brigade to southern Indiana graveyards. You never know what might come up. The one thing I wasn't quite ready for was the fact that I was going to have to occupy a vast stage and all the members were occupying stadium seating. I've never been treated to that sort of arrangement before, but it wasn't long before I just launched into things and forgot where I was and where the audience was. It was me and the story. As usual, I can't recall much of what I said. Lately, I've been starting at the same place in the story. I never know when or where I'm going to end up. I sold a good pile of books and the profits will go to the Newburgh Scholarship Fund.
Dave put me up at a hotel for the night, which I really appreciated. I was dead tired from the drive up to Indi and the talk. I really enjoyed my time in Indianapolis and I am grateful for the opportunity the Indianapolis Roundtable gave me to share Adam Johnson's incredible life story.
15 * Guest
Speaker- Morning Rotary Club at Casino Aztar, Evansville,
Joe Whelan had read my book and as a
member of the Morning Rotary Club decided to give me the
opportunity to share my thoughts on Thunder From a Clear Sky
with his club membership. This
appearance was quite a bit different than most. First, it
was at Casino Aztar in Evansville. I had been to Casino
Aztar perhaps three or four times since the gambling boat
complex came to town in 1995 - never to gamble, but for
functions and meetings. I had never been over in the area
where the meeting was and they had a nice room laid out
with round tables and a serving of juice and coffee.
Second, the entire meeting was about 1 hour, which, after normal club business, time for questions after my speech, and time for buying books, left me with about 15 minutes to do my talking. I usually do about 45 minutes, so this left with the prospect of producing a brand new speech on the spot to fit in the timeframe. I got up and decided to talk about how the book got going, but I didn't talk about the events of the raid - there was really no time.
Third, the reaction to my talk and to the causes the book supports was unbelievable. There were perhaps 35 people at the meeting (at most) and I wound up selling about that many books. There was a sincere outpouring of interest for the story and the book and I am extremely grateful to the Evansville Morning Rotary Club. It was one of the most unique speaking events I have had in two years of supporting the book. I spoke less and sold more than anywhere else I have been. Maybe this is some sort of signal!?
My sincere thanks to Joe Whelan for inviting me to the club and giving me this experience. I hope to appear at some of the other Rotary Clubs in the area this year.
17 * Book
Vendor- Midwest Writers Guild Spring Book Festival at
Washington Square Mall, Evansville, IN
The Midwest Writers Guild Spring Book Festival
This was the first annual Midwest Writers
Guild Spring Book Festival and it was a successful event.
Cora Seaman did me the favor of sitting me at the very
front table with authors Linda Bruckheimer
Margaret McCullogh (Evansville "One Book, One Community"
selection for How I
Found the Strong).
I was in great company. You never know how things are going
to work out at these events, but there was enough traffic
to satisfy me, and I sold a good stack of books. The event
was from 9 AM to 4 PM. I sold my first book at 9:02 AM and
sold my last book at 3:58 PM. The action was pretty steady
throughout the day with a little less traffic after 1:30
Author Linda Bruckheimer and Yours Truly
had a good time talking with Linda Brickheimer. She has
written two "road trip" books and they have both received
wide acclaim. I basically did what I always do, keep my
head into my business and try to talk about my book with as
many people as I can. Toward the end of the day I lifted my
head from my table long enough to meet some of the authors
sitting in the row behind me. We all took pictures of each
other and had a good time. The folks I met were Dorinda
Nusum, author of Afflicted and three other books; Gail P. Miller,
author of True Love
has a Passion for You; Madelyn Harvey (Elliott), author
of No Pain, No
Coleman, author of Blended
author Jessica Angelique.
Yours Truly with Dorinda Nusum (on my right), Valerie Coleman, and Gail Miller