Sunday, June 17, 2012

Meet The Authors! Or How to not let the audience know you're giddy!

Saturday, June 16th, fellow author, M.E. Franco and I were guests of the Stockton Library, M.E. was instrumental in making the event happen in the first place. She tried to get Barnes & Noble to do a local author event, but alas, we  weren't
B& N material...but that didn't bother us, we loved being guests of our local library and it helped me see the need to support our hometown library. They were so gracious to both of us, purchasing copies of our books to help support local authors. We in turn agreed to come, speak, and autograph the raffled copies.  It was truly a wonderful event.

So play by play:
For what M.E. and I understood this would be an adult event to which we readily agreed as both our novels are adult themed. But as the time clicked closer to begin, more and more parents with children filled the room. M.E. and I exchanged deer in the headlights expressions..."DOH!"

Both of us had arranged certain chapters to read from our books and now...both scrambling and looking for F-bombs, mention of boobs, passion or anything that wasn't kid-friendly. I took the stand first as this was my second public event and M.E.'s first. I let the audience know, our books were adult in nature but we were taking the kids into consideration so they wouldn't worry, or rush them out the room, like bad parents who took their kids to see films like the Exorcist or Jaws back in the 1970's.

For a brief moment I thought this is how Quentin Tarentino must feel when he goes to an event as a guest speaker for a 70's night...and finds out...70's are how old everyone is! Seriously it went really well, M.E. and I didn't miss a beat. In fact she quickly found an alternative chapter and she sounded brilliant as if she had planned it all along.

So the time comes for a Q&A and the questions were great the audience kept us laughing and when it seem to come to a lull, my wife came to the rescue with a new question that got us back on track!

Now we have to select a winner for each of our books. They asked anyone who wanted to win, to put their name in each bucket for the book they wanted and M.E. and I had to choose the winner. Low and behold, wouldn't you know it...a child won both times! We were both busting up by this time. M.E. told the little boy who won.."Give this to your mother!"  And the little girl who won my book, M.E. told her, "Read it when you're 18!" LOL!  Then something amazing happened, people actually wanted to come up and get their pictures taken with us! We were both floored by that. Some people actually bought copies of our books and M.E. had some awesome swag to give away. I couldn't find my swag as I just moved and it's in a box somewhere in the Bermuda Garage.

All in all, the experience was awesome, not only did we get to support our local library but we got to meet a lot of wonderful people, who were so supportive of us as writers. I encourage indie authors, go to your public library, offer them a free copy of your book in exchange for an author event, bet they'd be pleased to agree!  It's good to get out there and meet the public! Who knows who might be in the audience...The nice thing...they invited us back when we release our next book!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

From Drama Class To Published Authors.

Authors, M.E. Franco and Thomas Amo, have more in common than being Indie authors, they have been friends since meeting in drama class sometime in the last century. "Instantly, I knew she was talented! She was not only hysterically funny, but she was joy to share the stage with." Oddly enough the two years I shared a drama class with M.E. Franco in high school, we wouldn't actually be in a show together until, 1997 when I opened up my own all comedy theatre, "Smiler's Comedy Playhouse." Previous to that experience though, the two of us were in a movie together, "The Revenge of Chris White" and the sitcom, "Passport, Please." (Don't look for those gems of T.V. and motion picture entertainment) you won't find them anywhere. They're most likely buried alongside of Jimmy Hoffa.

This Saturday, our dynamic due continues on their trek in the world of arts and entertainment, as now we have both gone from being, stars of stage and screen to published authors. (Yes, this is a self serving blog.) Both of us have been writing all of our lives. I was published, in 2000 with my adventure romance novel, "Silence." It would be another eleven years before I was published again and for good reason. I still had a lot to learn about being a writer. During the 1990's while I owned my theatre, I began writing my own plays for the stage and that taught me a great deal about plot development and how to get the story moving from the beginning. If you own an all comedy theatre, then yours shows should begin with a laugh and end with a laugh...if you can't manage shouldn't be writing comedy.

I was thrilled when I spoke to M.E. about the fact she was going to publish her first novel! Now just over a year she's about to release her second in a series. So to celebrate, we are appearing together at the Stockton library this Saturday, June the 16th at 2:pm where we will be reading from our novels, "An Apple For Zoe, & Where Will You Run?" We will also be talking about the world of Indie publishing and doing a Q&A as well.

It's an exciting time for any author to be asked to come and speak about their work. I want to thank the Stockton Library and M.E. Franco for being the liaison for the event. So come down this Saturday and say hello if you're local! We'd love to say hi and meet you!