Last week Amazon pulled out all the stops and generously brought all their authors to New York for Book Expo America. There were Limos, beautiful rooms, nice restaurants, and rooftop parties with this view.
There were agents and publishers and writers everywhere you turned. I had a chance to meet several Amazon authors for the first time, as well as other writing and publishing friends who I haven’t seen in quite a while.
Basically, it was a hell of a week.
Amazon had a few big announcements: The hiring of Larry Kirshbaum to run their New York office, a new $164 3G Kindle, and of course, Barry Eisler jumping from St. Martins to sign on with Thomas & Mercer.
All the blogs I’ve seen seem to focus on Barry’s decision not to self publish in favor of Thomas & Mercer, but I can’t speak to that. My experience with self publishing is very limited and goes way back to early 2009 B.K. (before Konrath). A lot has changed since those days, so I’ll let other people talk about what his decision means. Personally, I think he made a great choice. Amazon is fantastic to work with, and I couldn’t be happier to be publishing on the Thomas & Mercer imprint. Having a writer like Barry Eisler on board raises everyone’s profile, which is good for us all.
Plus, I’ve heard that angels fly from his hair when he laughs. Don’t hold me to that one though, it’s just a rumor.
What else… I had two great signings in New York, one at the Library Journal’s Day of Dialog in the McGraw-Hill conference center on Monday, and another at the Amazon Publishing booth on the last day of the convention.
The Library Journal signing went great, and even though I was competing against an open bar, I still managed to sign quite a few books.
I was worried about the turnout for the second signing. Compared to the chaos of the previous couple days, the convention center was quiet and everything was winding down. Amazon had scheduled me to sign at the booth from 1:00 to 2:00, right before they kicked everyone out and locked the doors. I’d been told that there had been several people stopping by earlier that day asking about the signing, but I still didn’t think I’d make much of a dent in the 300+ books Amazon had waiting for me at the booth.
Turns out I didn’t have to worry.
People started lining up fifteen minutes before I was scheduled to sign, and the line just kept getting longer. I didn’t stop, or even slow down, until 2:30 when we ran out of books. One lady who handed me a book to sign told me the line was so long at one point that a couple of the other presenters were complaining about people blocking their booths, which made me laugh.
If only it was the norm...
Still, what a great way to end an amazing week.
Oh, and if anyone is interested, you can download the first three teaser chapters of my new novel, ALREADY GONE... HERE.