Sunday, March 7, 2010

Grouchy Authors Not Welcome Here

I have the pleasure of attending numerous book fairs. In fact, I attended three such events just within the last three weeks. Here’s my rant for the day: It never ceases to amaze me how disagreeable and unapproachable some authors appear! At one of my recent events, I was tempted to grab my camera and take a few pictures to demonstrate the “don’ts” of author behavior; however, I must admit that it was the fear of a lawsuit kept me sane. Why do so many authors stack their books in neat piles on the table, and then sit behind the piles wearing deep frowns upon their faces? Their expressions say loud and clear, “Don’t you dare speak to me!” I recently witnessed one author who was reading a book (behind his stack), another one playing a game on his cell phone and another – in my opinion the worst one of all – typing away on his laptop. All this while supposedly introducing their books to the public. Is this really the image you wish to portray?

There are many books on body language and it might help if exhibiting authors (or for that matter, anyone who deals with people) took the time to read them. Uncross your arms, put down that book, put a smile on your face and open yourself up to people. You will be amazed at the results.

C’mon people, believe in your book. Believe in yourself. Believe in the power of a smile!

Thanks for listening to my rant! :)

Bobbie Hinman :)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

What’s Really in a Screen Name?

Remember when you went through a stage where you didn’t like your name? Did you think your name was too girlie, too masculine, too old-fashioned, or just plain weird? Most of the people I asked said they’ve been there.

I for one have never liked my name. I always thought “Barbara” was too common and ordinary. What’s more, I couldn’t identify with the name. I never felt like a “Barbara.” From the time I was 4 or 5 years old, I insisted that people call me Bobbie instead. I’ve known a number of people who evade their name by suing their middle name, and still others who go by their initials.

Enter the screen name. What a great idea. Now you can be known as anything you like. I was recently sifting through my mailing list and wondered - Is jaguargirl a car fanatic or a catlike person? Is jonwonkonobie a Star Wars fan? Does the name karatemama tell you anything? Is ethel clinging to the past? Is directordan (who I know is not a real director) just want us to think he’s in charge? And what about gamecock? (I’m almost afraid to guess.) And hedgehogsdilemma? And dogears?

Whatever the reason, whatever the name, I think it’s great that we can now be known by any name we choose!