Indie Author Day in Virginia Beach was the first of its kind for me. I’ve done book signings before, but not as one of many authors presenting their works to the curious and buying public. I realized early in the day that we all shared the same malady: a passion for our story. Ask a writer about anything but their work and you will get a response from a regular human being. They’ll maintain eye contact, give length-appropriate answers, and ask questions in turn.
But ask them about the story between the book covers, and you will come face to face with the madness. Eyes glaze over with a faraway look as they tell you about a fictional world (or a real-world issue) that drove them to put words on paper. Your question becomes the sound that looses the avalanche of story, theme, character, rhyme, and reason that far exceeds the bounds of conversation; which is why we write books. The story must be told. And once written, we need it to be read. Putting words on paper is a real invitation for others to walk into our minds and cohabit with our thoughts for a time. Call it crazy courage or vulnerability birthed from vanity. Or simply call it passion, for without it the work would never be done.
Everyone dreams, though not all remember them. Everyone thinks, though not all care to share. Everyone has a story. Few write it down. Miss Shirley’s fingers were bent with age, but soft with care. They were warm. But to be fair, she said my hands were cold (which they were). She looked up at me intently and informed me that she wrote jingles. She was curious how she might publish them. What type of jingles, I asked. Her light blue eyes glazed over as she reached into her purse and pulled out her small spiral notebook. Jingles, like this one, she said. She was a poet; a poet of the greeting card variety, precious and dear. And she had the malady. After handing me the notebook, she took it back and turned the page. Here, ready this one. It’s about my dog Yoda. I love the writer’s passion!