All on the Same Page Book Store was more than Newbie Writer Friendly. It was Newbie Writer promoting, prop upping, and a place where a Newbie could feel like he or she was somebody in the writing world. Felt good just walking in the store. But, bummer of monumental proportions, the store is gone. But thanks and God bless you for what you did for me, and I feel confident saying, others besides me. I wish I could have made you enough money on my books to pay you somewhat for what you did for me. Thanks, like majorly.
On the other hand, Main Street Books in St. Charles continues under new management. Sadness in paragraph one, but joy in this one. I got to meet the new owners, and am pleased to have my books there.
In 2010, after working on The Ensign Locker for three years, my One and Only Squeeze walked in to the Man-cave one morning and asked me what I was going to do to get it published. I didn't have time to mess with that, I told her. I wanted to get started on a second book. "What are you going to do with this one?" she asked. "I'm going to print a copy and stash it in a box in the basement," replied the pre-Newbie Writer. I was hoping for posthumous appreciation, I'm pretty sure. "Any of your writing I find in a box is going in your casket with you," says she. After a quick check of actuarial tables, I took a stab at finding a publisher and an agent. Never heard back from any one of them, and self published. I am now working on a fourth book. Don't know if I'll go self published again or not. We'll see.
I have no idea how much I will appreciate posthumous appreciation, or, of course, if there will be any. What I do know is that an inch or two of shelf space in a real live operating book store supporting books with my name on the spine: Priceless in the present.
John Zerr is the author of four novels, The Ensign Locker, Sundown Town Duty Station, Noble Deeds, and The Happy Life of Preston Katt.
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