His book talk, and his book is a best seller, was not about the book at all. What is was about was him. It went on for 50 minutes in which he detailed his rise and fall and rise, which entailed a lot of name dropping and a lot of talk about money. A lot. Certainly this is the primary, if not only reason, he writes.I am not suggesting all books have to strive to be art. But it's hard to listen to someone who only writes for the money. ONLY.
I am not sure that the audience didn't like this, but I sure didn't. I was not there to hear about how many copies he sold and how President Bush sent him a fan letter nor how he needs a lot of dough to keep his kids in private school. This was not his first book but his ninth. Did no one ever tell him that maybe discussing the current book or reading from it might be the way to go?
I doubt he's ever attended another author's event because he showed no sign of knowing how the system worked.
So what should an author do at a book talk?
The best ones I have attended do this: the author talks briefly about herself. The author talks a bit about how the idea for the book came to him: about: its evolution. The author reads from the book-maybe for about 5-10 minutes. The author answers questions for as long as they come. He can expand on the questions where that makes sense. The main thing here is the BOOK.Talk about the book. And please don't say, in front of a book store owner, that you don't care if ebooks prevail over print as long as you make money. Yikes!
What do you like to hear from an author at a signing?