Last night was one of those overwhelming evenings. You sit in a room over your garage writing and listening to the rooster crow for a year, then you walk into a bookstore in Madison and there are people all over the place. I’m already wearing the “thank you” letters off my keyboard, but here goes again, and also a special thank you to those who stood in the signing line for so long that they were making dinner plans with people they’d never met before.
One thing you might find interesting about bookstore readings is that after the last book is signed…you sign a whole bunch more. It’s called “signing stock.” Meaning if you idle on into the bookstore over the next little while you can get a signed copy of most of my titles. Last night I had a loyal crew of three folks helping me plow through the stack. It’s good work and I’m glad to have it.
I was signing books at the Kickapoo Country Fair when a woman handed me a copy of Population 485 that had been signed by Don Majkowski. Apparently she had met him at a football camp earlier in the week and she had him autograph the only thing handy, which was a copy of my book. She was a little apologetic, but I thought it was terrific.
I still remember the excitement of watching the “Majik-Man” play, blonde mullet and all. In the midst of some grim doldrum years for the Pack, Majkowski gave us hope, and he beat the Bears in an especially delicious way.
Then he got hurt. Then he came back. Then, on September 20, 1992, he injured his ankle during a game against the Bengals and was replaced by a new kid named Brett Favre.*
So. If you see Don Majkowski, please tell him I don’t mind him signing my books as long as he doesn’t mind me signing his footballs.
*Sadly, after serving as the Packers starting quarterback for 16 consecutive seasons and setting nearly every record extant, in 2008 Favre abruptly and mysteriously disappeared, never to be heard from again.
I once heard a very famous author (I believe it was Neil Gaiman) say that he dealt with a disorganized throng of signature-seekers by asking them to line up in order of IQ — lowest to the front, highest to the rear. He said that settled things pretty quickly.