Monday, October 22, 2012

3 Things I Learned from my Library's Author Lunch

Happy Monday, all!

My local library sponsors an "Author's Lunch" every year and this year they happened to get Harlan Coben (last year was Lisa Scottoline).

I definitely had heard of him, but hadn't read any of his books. But I wanted to go anyway. (Plus, I'm on the Library Board, so it kind of makes sense that I'd go)

Anyway, when my mother-in-law (she was my guest) and I walk in, I noticed that we had a great table. Right in front of the podium. Bonus.
I'm thinking I can take a great picture!

I Googled him so I knew what he looked like, so when he came in, I said to my mother-in-law, "Hey, there he is! Take my picture with him!"
So we rush up to him and he was kind enough to throw his arm around me and pose.
(Picture is on Facebook if you need proof)

We went back to our table all proud of ourselves for getting such a great shot. Then 10 seconds later he comes over and sits down...AT OUR TABLE. (I had no idea he would be sitting with us!)
To be honest, I didn't think even think they would feed him. LOL)

I can honestly say he is one of the FUNNIEST men I've ever met. He could do stand-up comedy. He was so entertaining. We had a great time!

So I have to share one funny story he told us when the floor was opened up to questions:

One time he had an author friend whose book he really liked and it wasn't getting any press. So he talked about it on one of his TV appearances.

The book was Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code

Well, after that it obviously shot up the bestseller list. Then it overtook Harlan's book and his became #2.
Then when Harlan had his next book come out his agent called him up and said, "Sales are awesome. The book is doing great."
So Harlan says, "So it's #1?"
His agent says, "No. It's #4."
Why was that?
Dan Brown had three books out at the time and his were #1, #2, and #3.


(He was kidding. Sort of) LOL!

Then someone at the luncheon told me they have been looking at authors for next year, but they had to rule one author out already.
Why? The author wanted $25,000, plus hotel, plus round trip airplane tickets for her, her children and her children's nanny.

My library obviously passed.

So...what are The Three Things I Learned from this Luncheon?

1) Harlan Coben is awesome
2) Word of mouth is obviously THE best form of book promotion
3) When you become a big name author, don't be a Diva

I know. I'm so wise.  :-)

What about you? Have you read any Harlan Coben books?


Maria Zannini said...

That was a funny story. Apparently, it matters whose mouth is doing the talking too.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Ha! That's true, Maria! LOL

Jessica Nelson said...

Heard of him, haven't read him, but this makes me want to! lol Your pic on fb was so cute too. Great stories!!

Linda G. said...

OMG! Harlan Coben is one of my absolute favorite writers! I am sitting here turning green with envy.

Wendy Paine Miller said...

Just cruised through Coben's Hold Tight. Excellent read. My kind--makes me think.
~ Wendy

Julie Jarnagin said...

I haven't read any of his books, but now I want to. Did you ask him if he'd promote your book? :)

Bossy Betty said...

So great to hear from an author who is willing to share his experiences and be so genuine about it!

Old Kitty said...

Wow. That's Harlan Coben! In your library. HOW COOL!??!?!?!?! *faints*!

Take care

Rula Sinara said...

What a cool experience! I haven't read his books, but I've read about him for sure :)

Laura Marcella said...

How cool! I've featured a bunch of his quotes on my blog. He always has good advice!

Glad you had such a great time. And I hope you had a happy birthday this weekend, Jennifer!! (I remember yours because it's the same day as mine!)

Jill Kemerer said...

I would have grabbed a picture with him too! You're hilarious!!

$25,000?? Are these people for real? Uggh!

Nancy said...

Your experience with Harlan Coban sounds so exciting. He must be a great guy.

I once got to sit at a table with Steven Strang who was editor of Charisma magazine at the time. That was my only brush with celebrity. He was very kind, too.

LTM said...

I have not read any Harlan Coben books! But he does sound hilarious. And you are so right about word of mouth. BEST way to sell books--or anything, really! :o)

I also think your #3 is very good. No divas, please! :D <3

Linda Kage said...

HA!!! I love those tips! I'll be sure to only ask for $24,000 if your library ever contacts me!

I've never read any of HC's books, but I have read The Da Vinci Code (poor guy--I wouldn't talk up anyone else book after that either!!). He sounds fun.

Connie Keller said...

WOW! What an amazing story. Thanks for sharing I can't wait to read the funny story.

Carol Kilgore said...

I have a couple of his books, but I haven't read them yet. I'm so far behind in everything it's no longer funny.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

His Dan Brown story was something else!

Sally Clements said...

oh, you should get one of his book straightaway, Jennifer, he's an awesome writer. Good thing I wasn't there or I'd have been having an embarrasing fangirl moment *squeal*

Southpaw said...

That sounds like it was wonderful. I love that it was at the library too!

Carolyn V said...

I haven't but he sounds so amazing. I'll have to get one!

Karen Lange said...

You ARE wise! And I'm glad you shared this with us. I almost feel as though I visited your fair garden-y state and attended too. :D Will have to check out some of his books.

Have a great week!

Terah Edun said...

I have not read any of Harlan's book but his commentary was quite funny. Particularly the Dan Brown bit. Hard to imagine he wasn't getting any marketing help from his pubs but glad Harlan stepped in.

And really, $25,000?! That's a lot of money to request for an appearance.

R. Doug Wicker said...

Cool story. Thanks for sharing it, Jennifer.

2019TrevorP said...

I've heard of him but haven't read him. that's so awesome. And word of mouth is the best! That's awesome your library does this.

Cheryl Klarich said...

I'm sorry to say I haven't heard of Harlan, but he sounds like one cool dude! I would love to read his work. :)

Sandra Cox said...

Oooh, how cool is that. Harlan Cohen is an amazing author. If you haven't read him give him a shot. And you got to sit at the table with him. Wow.