I have a signing today in an area where I am unknown, alien, and transitory. If anyone shows up it will be because the bookstore owner did an excellent job of presenting me, and for her sake, I hope it works. A friend who had a similar event on Saturday got two people: a mom and her adolescent kid. I'm keeping a rein on my expectations.
At times like these it's easy to feel like a pebble in the ocean, but then something wonderful happens. By email, I got a message from a fan. Just someone who likes the book, someone who wanted me to know that Amazon has had to order more books, someone who claims I did an excellent job of mixing romance and Shakespeare. He's enthusiastic, he's complimentary, and the only thing he wants from me is a sequel.
When you've been on the road for weeks, it's a great thing to hear. We all need to know that we're appreciated, and I've said it many times before: If you like an author's work, write a review of the book on amazon. Tell your friends, pass the book around, do what you can to promote it. But most of all, tell the author. She may be in a motel room 1400 miles from home, and it might be the best thing that happens to her all day.