The Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Book-Signing

August 1, 2016 § 6 Comments


c7966c6ffda6ea6cb48a6739be57d404

Our Editor-in-Chief, before discovering his affinity for nonfiction

I’m a constant advocate of owning who we are, giving ourselves permission, announcing “I’m a writer” at the drop of a hat. But I’ve had the conversation that often follows that announcement, the one where they ask what I write, and if it’s anything they would have read. I’ve felt the way that conversation dwindles into not having anything to talk about. I’ve brightly turned the subject to, “And what do you do? Data analysis? That’s fascinating! Tell me more!”

It’s never been this bad:

The questions start at once. The first guy in line, who may have been here an hour or more, bends down to look under the table, like I might be hiding someone else underneath there. His hair is gelled. It doesn’t move when he bobs down and up, twice. He reaches in his back pocket and pulls out a picture of himself with, I think, the most recent Miss America.

He says, “You are not her.”

He says, “I know her.”

He says, “This is false advertising.”

His face is red. Above his upturned polo collar, a vein pops in his neck like a worm. He stomps a foot. “I’m getting the manager over here now,” he says.

I’ve never had a book-signing at a Sam’s Club, let alone one that mistakenly announces me as Miss America. But Lori Jakiela has. And it was both as bad as one might imagine and a great deal worse. Fortunately, she got an amazing essay out of the experience, one that touches on the complex bargain of being smart instead of beautiful, and how we let others name the measure of our success despite our own best efforts.

Read the whole essay at LitHub–you’ll be glad you did.

___________________________________

Allison Williams is Brevity’s Social Media Editor.

Tagged: , , ,

§ 6 Responses to The Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Book-Signing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

What’s this?

You are currently reading The Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Book-Signing at BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog.

meta

%d bloggers like this: