September 24, 2012

Speaking at Writer’s Workshop at CPAC 9.22.12

I was the first speaker at the Heart of Dixie Writer's Workshop and Book Signing. For days I convinced myself that I would not be nervous. Then when I walked on stage my voice choked up. For years I have done public speaking and love it. There was no reason to be so nervous and I love to talk about my book, but I set the bar too high and panicked that I wouldn't be able to pull it off.  I opened by talking about how I got the idea for the book from the Genesis song Home By The Sea. Then I discussed how I decided to self-publish because my mother had gotten pancreatic cancer and wasn't expected to survive. I wanted her to be able to read my book- in her hands- before she passed away. Luckily my mother survived her cancer - the second time she has had cancer and survived, we are amazed and thrilled.
After that Idiscussed my crappy first cover art. I showed them the cover art with the help of my AV assistant and son Trevor Moon. I asked them if that looked scary to them? No one seemed to think so. I said to besure and fight for what you want because your cover will become your brand. Then I discussed briefly branding your book with that cover art.For example, my book cover is on my business cards, my rack cards that I use to promote the book, my banner and I even purchased t-shirts and a notebook with that cover art. In addition it is on all of my social media- facebook author page and this blog. After that I told them that now I get to do the fun things about being an author like book signings, readings and things like speaking there for them today. Then I closed with the photo of Iron Man and his friends saying YOU SHOULD BE WRITING.
I exited stage right and walked around behind the stage to rejoin the audience. I never heard anyone clap for me so when the next speaker Rhett Barbaree finished and got great applause I was crushed. My friend assured me that they all clapped for me. I must not have been able to hear it back stage.

Other speakers:
Rhett Barbaree             Thank God for Boll Weevils
Anna Kathryn Davis    The Gifted
Anne Dalton                 Massacre Island, Dream Ghost, and more!
Ashley Kitchens           Writer's Workshop Presentation (What great stuff!)

I had a cake made for the occassion since it was also my birthday and we shared cake during the book signing. Now I can actually say that people literally ate my book up that day!

We had a great time and met some new people. I would like to thank Christine Brown from Clanton Conference and Performing Arts Center for putting on such a great program. She says she will be doing this again semi-annually! Yippie! Also my son Trevor Moon for helping me to produce and then to show the video work that provided the photos of my mother and my crappy cover and the good one! And my husband Ben for being there and supporting me and on photo duty! And my great and dearest friend Sharon Cornell Keyes for her undying support and encouragement.