Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Learning to be Gracious

This weekend, I had the honor of signing beside Nora Roberts at her husband’s book store in Boonsboro, Maryland – Turn the Page. In all, there were about eight authors present for a signing that was meant to be from noon to 2pm. I say ‘meant’ because we stayed until after 4:30, when the last person waiting in line finally got her books signed and left.
Just look at all those people! That line was steady for 4.5 hours!

For me, an author who is still learning the ropes, I couldn’t ask for a better role model than Nora.  Even though she was feeling under the weather, she was there early, dressed to the nines and looking fabulous. She sat there for the entire 4 and a half hours, only getting up once for a very short break.  She smiled at each and every fan, patiently signed their stacks of books, and posed with a bright smile with absolutely everyone who asked.
Y’all, Nora is a super star. She definitely didn’t have to do the signing. Yes, it was wonderful for her family’s business, but truly she could never write another book again and still enjoy a successful career. But she did it because she seems to genuinely love and respect her fans. It’s that respect that made an impression.

And Nora isn’t the only example of graciousness in my business. There is Sabrina Jeffries, who always makes time for fans and fellow authors alike. Even before we became friends, she was happy to offer up her knowledge of the business to us newbies in hopes of helping her fellow writer get ahead. She is incredibly busy, yet she took the time to write a cover quote for me. That’s a big deal, and it is a kindness I will never forget. 
There is also another author, who shall remain nameless (since I don’t want her inundated with requests!) who went way above and beyond for me. My friend was turning 40, and this author was her very favorite. When I appealed to her for a signed book for her birthday, offering to send the book or money, the author instead sent a big package including several signed books for my friend, an actual birthday card, and even a few signed books for me! I mean, how incredibly generous and awesome is that?
I’m so blessed to have these incredible women as role models. It is my hope to emulate them in their graciousness, kindness, and even their work ethic. I hope to always give my readers a warm fuzzy so they know just how important they are to me. I am grateful for each and every one of you! Just as a reminder, I am always happy to send a free signed bookmark and swag to my fans – just email a request to erin@erinknightley.com. 
And if you, as a reader, ever want to give back to your favorite authors, I hope that you will take a moment to post a nice review or tell your friends about them. Spreading the word is the very best thing you can do for the authors you love :-)
So tell me—who has been a role model to you (no matter what you do in life)? A teacher? A parent? A fellow coworker? 

1 comment:

  1. It's so wonderful when megastars remember their humble beginnings and go above and beyind for their fans even when they don't "have" to. I know for sure that you are one of those people:) Congrats on an awesome event!