Hello! And what will your autograph be?
My name is Alyssa Brugman and I am going to be your resident blogger for the month of February. I have been really looking forward to this because I want to hear from YOU! Readers! Most writers don’t get to have a conversation with readers about what THEY think, so I hope you will speak up and tell me exactly what your opinions are.
Some of my posts will be just for fun. I'm also going to talk to you a little bit about the business of being a writer (like this post below), but I am also going to throw some thorny issues in there – questions that have been bugging me for a while. I’m hoping as readers and writers you can air some different perspectives.
First a tiny bit about me. My first novel "Finding Grace" came out in 2000, and I have just released my twelfth novel "Alex as Well" the day before yesterday. I write mostly realistic young adult fiction. I have written a junior fiction series of five books, and one little fantasy book. I have just spent the last five or so years doing PhD in narratology at Canberra University, and in that time I've been thinking a lot about young adult fiction - what it is and how it works. I think (hope) it's made me a better writer.
First up I have an exercise for you. Try writing down the lyrics to one song while you are singing the lyrics to another song.
Now ask someone to tell you a story while you are writing down a different story.
How did you go? Were you able to recall the story you were told?
As a writer you have to sign autographs in the front of books. The thing is that you have to write something quick while you are talking about something else, because the person wanting the autograph will usually want to tell you something about their experience reading the book, or a previous book, or will be posing a question that you will be expected to answer in a witty way while you are writing the autograph.
It helps if it can be funny and/or inspiring. It has to be fast because (if you're lucky) other people are waiting for their turn. Some writers write the same thing in all books. Some just sign their name. I usually write something that has to do with that book. For example, in 'For Sale or Swap' I will write something like, "Don't swap your pony!", and in 'Walking Naked' I will write, "School ends, eventually..." or similar.
I've always wondered whether it would be better to just sign my name with 'Best wishes" and actually talk to the person, or if I should write something a little bit personalised that they can have for later.
What would/do you write in the front of your book?
Would you write something different in each or stick with the same thing?
If you would write the same thing, what situation would warrant a special message?
Have you had a special book signing moment as a writer or a reader that you would like to tell us about?