Indie Bookseller Love

I’m just back from a quick trip to Salt Lake City for the American Bookseller’s Association Winter Seminar. This is a meeting for independent booksellers to attend seminars on the business of bookselling–which, in this economic climate, is no easy thing to do. But booksellers are some of my all-time favorite people in the world, so it was a great trip. Last night I was part of a group of 40 authors. The booksellers had a cocktail reception, and the authors sat at tables ringing the ballroom, siging advance reader’s copies (ARCs) or finished copies of their newest book. I was thrilled to be giving away the brand spanking new ARCs of THE FIXER UPPER. The new book won’t be out til June, but the ARCs go out now to booksellers and reviewers, so they can hopefully order gabillions of copies and start generating early buzz. Saw lots of old friends, including the wonderful folks from Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, Inkwood Books in Tampa, Rainy Day Books in Kansas City, Mystery Lovers Bookshop in Oakmont, Pa., Books and Books in Coral Gables, and even my old friends from Mysterious Galaxy in San Diego. Bookselling is a labor of love for these folks, and in these challenging times, they have an uphill battle, but these folks are so smart, engaging, imaginative and brimming with love for the written word that it is always a treat to spend time with them. It made me want to be a better writer, and a better book lover. And, oh yeah, to pay attention to how and where I buy my books. Indie booksellers are the folks who supported me way back in 1992, when my first mystery, EVERY CROOKED NANNY was published. I’d sit in a Waldenbooks store at a mall, and the only time anybody would talk to me would be to ask me where the bathrooms were. But those indies, like the late, lamented Oxford Books in Atlanta, and Final Touch Books in Decatur, threw me book parties, hand-sold my books, and encouraged me to keep going. And now, here I am, almost 17 years later, with 17 books published. It still amazes me when I look at all those book jackets framed on my office walls. Tomorrow’s SuperBowl Sunday, but the game doesn’t start ’til 6 p.m. Why not take yourself over to an independent bookseller–either to a brick-and-mortar store, or to an indie bookseller’s online site, and treat yourself to a shiny new book? It doesn’t even have to be one of mine–although that would be nice, and yes, DEEP DISH does come out in paperback in February. Browse around, let the book-loving clerks give you their recommendations for a great new read, or pick up a new release you’ve been dying to try out.
And oh yeah, tell ’em Mary Kay sent you.

3 thoughts on “Indie Bookseller Love”

  1. Hi Mary Kay!
    Sounds like you had a great time out there in SLC! I can’t wait for The Fixer Upper to come out ~ I have it on pre-order since I heard about it! I love, luvvvvvv your books and put everything on hold when I get that brand new one in my hands!! My Mom is also a convert to your sassy writing style!
    Lots of Hugs, Bebe 🙂 (yes, that’s my real name, just like in your books!)

  2. seeing your mention of Every Crooked Nanny made me remember how much I loved that series…..and miss it! 🙂

  3. Wait, what? Oxford closed? You’ve got to be kidding. My sister lived w/in walking distance while in Atlanta, and we’d spend hours there. It truly was the best.


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