It’s always exciting when you’re invited to speak on a subject you know quite well. But how do you plan for the things that don’t go as planned?
That’s what happened when I was invited to a local high school to talk about publishing and art to the students. I arrived thirty minutes beforehand to set up. Looking good, I thought as one of the faculty members came in to assist with the cables, only to find out they needed a second projecter because the main one wasn’t working.
Not a problem, I thought. I’ll just boot up my computer and check the internet connection. Unfortunately, the internet connection wasn’t working, and I a lot of links to show. As the teachers rolled in the new projector, they tried to find the right cable that would fit my mac. Now, if I had brought an ipad, we would have been set. But none of the cables matched. So one of the teachers brought in her laptop for me to transfer all my powerpoint presentations to. Luckily, I brought one of my flashdrives. With the powerpoints transferred, we opened them up to test.
“Wait! My links are missing!” Not only that, but entire words were missing from the slides. Poof! Gone.
Wow! We had about five minutes left before students started coming in, and I was still fiddling with the thing when they did arrive. What evetually happened was this: we decided to run my laptop and hers at the same time. I would signal when to change the slides. It was fun, though, despite the fact that things weren’t looking so hot. But at least her computer worked. I know I lost some attention when we needed to mannually type in the links to what I needed to show, and sometimes my mac wasn’t timed currently with the current slide. But it still worked out okay.
I did mention one of my favorite authors during the presenation. Trish Terrell had sent me an email early that moring, and the subject matched so perfectly with my talk that I printed the email out to read to the class. Trish was an author I had met back when she only had about three to four books published at the time. I told the students how an agent had said she’d never be published and to give up. But I let them know that they were above people telling them their stuff was worthless. Trish had published about fifteen books since then, and so could they.
Nowadays, the road to publishing can lead down many paths. You just have to pick the one that fits you.
That brings me to another subject.
The Road Blocks of publishing.
I can’t believe what I’m hearing about not being able to get into bookstores. Why? Because of one tiny thing.
POD!!!! The infamous “Print-on-demand” issue. Although I believe it to be cost-effective, bookstores do not. That makes my publisher currently related to “Publish America.” The only bookstore that I managed to set up a book signing with was a local one. All others won’t accept it.
Darn… but I’m not going to worry about it.
Writer’s Market still comes out every year. Heh.