"The notion that such persons are gay of heart and carefree is curiously untrue. They lead, as a matter of fact, an existence of jumpiness and apprehension. They sit on the edge of the chair of Literature. In the house of Life they have the feeling that they have never taken off their overcoats."
- James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Start the countdown

My house is a disaster. I know, I've said that before, but it's seriously filled with boxes and bags and paperwork. Most of it will be packed up and taken to the festival on Saturday, but part of it is lying around waiting for me to put it away.

I'll get it done, sooner or later.

In the meantime, I'm almost ready for the big launch on Saturday (Hint: Tri-City Park in Placentia http://ocparks.com/parks/tri_city_park/). Today, I spent a lot of time putting up the canopy and trying out the changes that I wanted to make after touring the LA Times Festival of Books and getting ideas.

I decided to put my banner on the very front of the canopy, so people can see it. Last year, I had to buy a new EZ-Up, since mine broke, and got a yellow one, so people can see it easily. I also wanted to position my tables to allow people to pass through the booth. For one thing, I was told that people don't want to come into a booth if it feels like they'll get trapped inside it, but they'll come in if they see an exit.

For another thing, small children always run through my booth anyway, so I might as well clear a path for them.

Another thing I did was to get some curtains to hang on the sides. Yes, I know you can get flappy-things to go on the sides, but I wanted something that didn't say, "I brought the snacks for the soccer game today."

It took several hours to check it out and get it right, but I think I got all the problems worked out. This is what it looks like:

My gnomes, Booker and Hatch, will go on little table with a sign encouraging people to come inside. I do think I'll get a different color of felt for the table. Green doesn't go with anything else.

Having two tables means I'll have my books on one table and swag on the other. What kind of swag? Well...

I'll have bookmarks and pens with my website on them. These little beauties:

A little fan to deal with the 96-degree day - what a great idea!

There will also be a cauldron full of candy, and my giveaway baskets.

What? Giveaway baskets?

Yes. You may not be able to see what's in them, but basically they contain either a coffee mug or martini glasses, a signed copy of one of my books, a bookmark, a pen, a fan, and a gift card to something good.

Gayle, how can I get one of these wonderful baskets?

I'm glad you asked. You can win one in a couple of ways. 

1. If you walk up to my booth at any time and say, "I shot a man in Reno," I'll give you a basket. 

2. Otherwise, every hour, I will give a basket to the 10th person who comes into my booth. 

Please come see me. Even if  you're not a winner, I'd love to see you there!

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