Another Library Reading

Stop hyperventilating, damn it! 
I implored myself to read slower and breathe deeper. Every line of poetry felt like an ocean swim with my head emerging from the waves just before my vision faded. I desperately tried not to speed read. I read four poems, though I planned on five. But I made it.

There were four authors (not including me) sitting at gray tables on a pleasant afternoon in April. We had a fantasy writer, a YA author, a children's writer, a Christian author, and me. Each table had a banner across the modesty panel with our author photo, biography, and the cover of one of our books. I felt "legit."

The audience was great. We had a good Q&A, and the people who came my way were chatty and kind. I saw my middle school librarian who said she still sees my 3rd/4th grade teacher who was the person who inspired me to write poetry. No one gave me guff about my mask.

I learned from mistakes I made during the last reading. Pens were on the table from the moment I entered the conference room so I didn't have to scramble once the signing started. Brandon had smaller bills for the people who bought copies of Domestic Bodies and helped give change. I didn't misspeak as much when reciting my work, though the panic wasn't lessened.
During the Q&A, one of the topics that people kept coming back to was how we all got published. I know it's a common topic, but the amount of questions regarding the specifics surprised me. Within the next month, I want to approach the library about an event where people can learn more about the publishing industry and different pathways some of us local authors used to get our books into the world. I'll let you know what they say, but at least one other author thought it's a good idea.

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