Main Street Books

Main Street Books, St. Charles, Missouri Look in the window

It's a full day and a half later and I'm still trying to wipe the grin off my face. On Friday night, we had the launch party for A REASON FOR DYING at Main Street Books in St. Charles, Missouri. Over eighty people came out which was totally amazing and overwhelming. And a couple of people worked really hard to make it such a special night.

My in store display

My in-store display with American Beer books

First, there was our dear friend Laurie Kraft. If you were there, you would have seen the beautiful woman in the tux shirt serving for me. She thought of all the little details that made things special. And despite a bad back, she worked the crowd like a professional and even brought in some people from the street to buy some books. Laurie, you have my sincerest gratitude.

Then there was my beautiful wife, Linda. She is so special to me and none of this would have been possible without her. I'm also thrilled that two of my daughters were able to celebrate with me, Kelly and Kristen. Kaitlin, my youngest, is out celebrating the Lord at bible camp.

Lisa Pavia, my publicist. The long hours leading up to the launch. The push for media and spending the party with her boyfriend Liam taking photographs.

Then there was Vickie Erwin, owner of Main Street Books. All I can say is "WOW!" I arrived to see a dozen or so copies in a window and a wonderful display right in front of the store. She also demonstrated her sense of humor by placing a few books on American Beer on the display. For those of you that don't know, I work for Anheuser-Busch soon to be owned by the Belgium company Inbev. Of course there was the book scare, when the books didn't arrive until the day of the party.

My Cake

My Cake

Now about the night. I actually had a line! People waiting to visit and have my book autographed. I am in awe. As I reflect back, I'm surprised at how it's hard to remember details. I know I wanted to get up and talk to my friends and family, but I kept getting called to sit back in the comfortable author's chair to sign some more. In almost three hours, I didn't get a piece of cake and I only got to drink one beer. My wrist and fingers ached, and even my face hurt from smiling all night. But I wouldn't change a thing.

My Line

My Line

There were a number of authors that turned out to support me; Laura Bradford, Bobbi Smith and John Lutz took time out of their busy schedules. Of course there were family and friends, also members of the St. Louis Writers Guild and Sisters in Crime. There was even a couple from out of state, Bob and Alda that were on vacation and walking by. They came in and bought a book and chatted with me. It was awesome. I know I'm missing somebody.

John Lutz and Wilfred Bereswill

John Lutz and I

Bobbi Smith and WIlfred Bereswill

Bobbi Smith and I

Laura Bradford and Wilfred Bereswill

Laura Bradford and I

Several of the things I stressed about; books arriving on time, would I spell everyone's name right, would I spell my own name right (remember, I never use Wilfred), would I be able to come up with good thoughts to write? Practice makes perfect. Yes, I practiced my signature and sayings. I even had a few written out and in my pocket. Someone asked me, how I came up with what to write. I told them I practiced and they laughed. I pulled the piece of paper from my pocket and they laughed hysterically. When is was all over I was exhausted and hungry. I realized I hadn't eaten since 11 that morning and I was fighting to keep my eyes open. Despite all that, when my head hit the pillow, well after midnight, I just stared at the ceiling and smiled.

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Comment by Naomi Hirahara on July 23, 2008 at 11:39am
Congrats, Wilfred. Beautiful store and beautiful party.
Comment by Wilfred Bereswill on July 23, 2008 at 7:04am
Thanks, Joyce. If I could only remember the details.

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