It was Friday morning, with the market in Valbonne in full swing and a lot of people shopping and milling about. I was doing a “meet the author” book event at the English Book Centre in Valbonne for my books “Solitary Desire – One Woman’s Journey to France” and “Sun, Sea & Savoir-Faire – A Travel Focus on the French Riviera.” Thanks to Lin Wolff, owner and operator – I was graciously hosted and well-positioned in front of the shop ready to meet and greet customers.
Lin had casually mentioned that even when well-known author, Stephen Clarke, had done a book signing at her shop, it had been difficult to get business! So, what were my expectations? Basically, to enjoy the lovely morning and profit from a little publicity, rather than book sales. Unfortunately, there was building work, with a noisy cement mixer, next door to the bookstore, so my trailer video music, as a way to hopefully attract curiosity and attention to my table, was drowned out. No worries – I just greeted those who walked by, talked at length to a few, handed out business cards, and people watched. All in all, it was a very pleasant, sunny morning in a lovely town – success can be measured in various ways!
So, ……I’ll try again, and so I did the following month. Thanks to Lin, I hosted a mid-summer aperitif book event in the late afternoon. Again, it was very quiet, as I sat in the shade in front of the bookstore waiting for passers-by. Fortunately, the cement mixer was long gone. I ended up meeting some very nice expat couples and two lovely women, one who had driven from Cannes specifically to meet me. All in all, a personally rewarding afternoon for the success of meeting new people – priceless!