Big Trouble In Little LA (With A Funloving, Psychotic Redhead)
Posted on August 15, 2011
Book signings are a funny animal. They really are. I’ve done a number of them since the first version of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to My Sexual Orientation came out and each one continues to be a unique experience. This time around, though, the lovely GA Hauser arranged the event–at Book Soup in West Hollywood–which meant she dealt with the majority of the headaches and stress involved in such a venture. I merely stepped in once or twice with what we’ll call “bookstore relations”. Oh, and dealing a with psychotic redhead, but more on nutty little diva authorette Patricia Logan in a bit.
Here’s more than you’ll ever want to know about what can go on during setting one of these up. GA had been trying to arrange a signing at Book Soup for months and as early as last March or April. The contact there responded positively to the idea, suggested a time frame, then ceased responding to her. In order to increase exposure and make it a more lucrative sounding event to the store, GA asked a few fellow authors if they’d like to join in and they enjoyed the idea. It’s a signing…hello! They’re a ball and it’s LA. Anyway, flash forward several weeks with no reply from the store. I happened to be chatting with GA as I do–because I happen to be worthy, thank you–and she mentioned that one of the authors might not be able to make it and would I be interested. LA!!!! Ahem, yes, please. But the trick would be getting the book store to respond.
I e-mailed the contact there, introduced myself, forwarded a recent review of Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell and asked if there was anything I could send to them that might help our chances of setting up a signing there. No response. I waited a week and a half, then forwarded my e-mail to the contact with a polite message suggesting that it perhaps had fallen through the cracks. No response after two weeks. Now I’m irked and it’s been a month. GA and I spoke again–I remained worthy–and toyed with the idea of just dropping the idea, but then inspiration stuck.
I sent a final e-mail to the contact and suggested that if she hadn’t received any of my previous messages to please disregard my current one. If she had, though, and simply never bothered to respond, then I found it very rude. The authors involved were willing to travel some pretty long distances out of their own pocket and with the state of bookstores today, didn’t it behoove them to try and maintain a positive reciprocal relationship with authors? I also copied the owner. And wouldn’t you know it, I finally received a reply. I can’t imagine why.
While the results turned in our favor and we did set a date, our contact at the store seemed to go out of her way to make things extremely difficult for us. We weren’t added to the store’s site as an event for quite some time, the sheet of events gave us a single line while other events had 2-4 (GA is an award winning author and they couldn’t mention like they had for everybody else on that list? seriously?), the contact stopped responding to GA again, GA’s books weren’t even on display in the window (mine were and, actually, her books weren’t even taken out of the delivery box until we stopped in at the store Saturday morning) and the list goes on quite a bit. It was really petty stuff, but it added up and delivered a very blatant message.
And while we’re on the topic of petty–you’ll love this–another author who will go unnamed decided they didn’t want to attend since it was turning into an ego trip. Ego trip? Yes, because the event title we decided on was Behaving Badly with GA Hauser and Friends. GA set the whole thing up, invited people and continued to do everything she could to make sure it would be a success. As for Behaving Badly, it’s the title of one of her latest book releases. I’m the one who actually suggested it since it seemed entirely fair she should get the credit and top billing for the signing. My name doesn’t have to be on the marquis for people to like me or be interested in my books. They just have to show up and find out for themselves. Bloody unbelievable that an author would behave like that.
As for the other part, in the end, I can honestly say that I’ve never come across an event organizer at store who appeared to hold a grudge like this. The rest of the staff were wonderful and people spoke very highly of the store! It’s a shame one bad egg can ruin the mood.
Oh, eggs. We should have brought those. Instead, we brought wine, cheese and crackers to serve at the event and GA had free copies of one of her books to give away, plus we did fill every chair–a few folks had to stand. She also had a couple of her cover models attend, one of who did a delightful reading from one of her books. Heck, even the aforementioned nutcase psychotic redhead Patricia Logan did an amazing job for this being her first signing. It was almost scandalous the way she said the ‘c’ word–clock minus the ‘l’–during her reading. Twice! I may have even blushed a little. She didn’t. Go figure. Tart.
I have to give a huge thank you to everybody who attended, especially Jona (who refused to bring any of his past tricks with him despite my request and God knows there’s a legion of them), Robert (who’d met my guy and I last year in Palm Springs and who’d just returned from Vegas after what I hear was one of those ‘what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas’ experiences with an adult movie actor–no wonder he looked tired) and good friends Edwin & Ken (who we also met last year in Palm Springs and are always absolutely delightful).
So, for better or worse, you just got a taste of what can happen that you never hear about. We’re far from a group of divas–no matter how that nutcase psychotic redhead Patricia Logan may refer to herself in the third person–and we want these things to succeed. We also want a positive relationship whenever possible with the stores we visit. We need them and they need us. We’re also not very demanding. It doesn’t take much to keep us happy–except a certain diva nutcase psychotic redhead I won’t name who insisted certain audience members pay tribute to her dominatrix boots.
Kristoffer Gair (who formerly wrote under the pseudonym Kage Alan) is the Detroit-based author of Honor Unbound, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Sexual Orientation, Andy Stevenson Vs. The Lord Of The Loins, Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell, several short stories featured in anthologies (to be combined in a forthcoming book), the recently re-published novella Falling Awake, its sequel, Falling Awake II: Revenant and Falling Awake III: Requiem.
2 Responses to “Big Trouble In Little LA (With A Funloving, Psychotic Redhead)”
Patricia Logan says:
August 15, 2011 at 11:41 am
OMG you girl! If I’m a psychotic (I can’t even spell the fucking word) then you are the diva of the night… lol… *throws chin down* You were actually the most masculine man of the night… but don’t repeat that in polite company. What a sweet experience I had and with Ga and her assistant, the honey, Eric, who graciously carried my box, and *hello* (girl doesn’t let anyone carry her box) it was awesome… especially when you paid for the cheese… *plops a Swiss into her mouth and grins* Hee Hee Hee. Until we meet again my pretentious cutie… *kisses in a really slobbery way until he pulls back in horror* lol jack off….
GA Hauser says:
August 15, 2011 at 5:09 pm
Yes, Kris, you have got it pretty spot on as usual. Though the highlights were many, including you and Patty as my cohorts in crime- did anything compare to the moonlight swim on top of the hotel? Signing-schmining, give me a gorgeous assistant, pumped-electronic porn music from the hotel speakers, and you! That and Jeff reading from Mr. Right made all the headache of the event planner vanish. So wonderful to have you there. xo GA