Marketing: Week Seven

Sold a “Fully Armed” to a satisfied reader of “Cheesesteak” at the health club and a “Cheesesteak” to a fellow self-publisher-in-retirement (a former architect) at Berkeley Espresso.

This 80% fall-off was discouraging, which did not speak well of the development of my inner sense of self-worth. (Nor did my thinking, when informed by a fellow who’d received a freebie that his brother, who’d read it, intended to buy copies for friends, “What about you? Don’t you have friends?) I may have to re-think my approach.

Other reactions have been mixed. Two fellows, who’d bought “Cheesesteak,” announced they’d begun reading it, s if I should be pleased that had followed. (One said he’d learned more about me from it than from our having worked in the same building for years, as if that would be news t me too. The other, a restaurant owner, was most interested by what “inside-out” had meant at Pat’s.)

A 60ish psychologist at the French said “Cheesecake” was “the funniest book I’ve read in years.” (She was up to “As Mildred.”) When finished, she planned to send her copy to an octogenarian former English professor who co-hosted a podcast on books in Minnesota. (I gave her one for him.) A middle-aged man with a backpack looked at my display and said, “My wife will kill me if I bring home more books.” A woman walked by me at the club, while I, adhering to the “No Soliciting” rule sat silently with “Cheesesteak” propped upon my lap, and asked the 10-year-old next to me what he was reading. (“The Shadow Throne,” if you want to know.)

Maybe, I thought, I should hire a 10-year-old to read “Cheesesteak.” Maybe a slew of them. Maybe from Bangladesh. I hear they work cheap there.