What it Takes to Make a Book Tour

Jon doing the heavy work at Battenkill Books while Connie supervises
Jon and Connie at Battenkill Books

When I first started driving Jon around on his book tours, I was getting him tea and buying him special pens to sign his name with. But since Jon left Random House, and they gave up on his book Saving Simon Book Tour, it’s become more homey.

We’re driving out to Petersburg NY tonight where Jon will speak at the Library.  I hear it’s the towns community center and well loved,  so I’m sure it will be a lovely evening.   I always enjoyed traveling around with Jon on the book tours and especially getting room service in the hotels.  But not this book tour.  Today Jon’s hauling his books from Battenkill Books and we’ll deliver them to Petersburg Library where they’ll sell them at the reading tonight.

I remember one of the first  book tours  I went on with Jon where one night he spoke to a  full theater of over two hundred people and the next day went to a bookstore at noon where only four people showed up.  He didn’t bat an eye.  He had those four people pull their chairs into a circle and had a conversation about his book.  He handled it with grace and humility and I was impressed.

This is how much Jon believes in and cares about his work and his audience.  And he still impresses me. Every time he takes a beautiful photo or writes a meaningful post on his blog or publishes another book.   Every time he reinvents himself.   And when he pulls himself out of a dark place and creates a book tour, even if  his publisher won’t, and even if he has to deliver his own books.

9 thoughts on “What it Takes to Make a Book Tour

  1. Safe journeys. We are looking forward to Jon’s speech here in mid March. Our committee is working on details, and I will be letting you both know as soon as we firm a few things up.
    Debbie

  2. Jon is a unique and special person and the two of you are fortunate to have each other. The strength and fortitude that you both show in facing the ups and downs of life, whether they be health issues, or creative roadblocks like the need to invent the Orphan Book Tour, are admirable traits. Whenever I read yours or Jon’s thoughts online, the prompt me to do some serious thinking and reflection. Often they relate to issues I’ve had in my own life and I have to stop and analyze my own reactions to similar feelings that either of you have expressed. I am grateful for the generosity of your thoughts. Enjoy Petersburg. It sounds like a wonderful place. Their library should be filled with individuals who love and respect books.
    Jane

  3. I love the idea of ‘homey’, and the underlying idea of ebbing and flowing our way through life’s meandering paths and lessons with grace, humility, dignity and love. Great stuff, all.

  4. Beautifully written, Maria. Love the photo too! The poses say “look out, we mean business!” I’m rooting for the 2000 goal. Saving Simon is a wonderful book and it’s about so much more than Saving Simon. Reading Jon’s books and blogs, and yours as well, have helped me with some of life’s changes and challenges and transitions. Thank you.

  5. Hi Maria – it was fun to run into you and Jon with my sister, Anne Mann, from Katy, Texas on Saturday in the Roundhouse Cafe and then later at Silvano’s. She was in town for my daughter, Katharine’s wedding. Remember you made that green shades pillow for Katharine a couple of years back? Her wedding colors were shades of green too. (Just a connection thought.) My sister, Anne, would love a signed copy of Saving Simon. But I promised her that I would buy it from Jon in person at Battenkill Books. I LOVE the pic of Jon and Connie, and I appreciate your story about Jon’s “Self-Actualization Book Tour”. Fan and neighbor, Mary Scott.

    p.s. my sister, Anne, has your potholder of the Yoga girl “I love my body” in her laundry room on her Inspiration Wall along with poems and prayers and quotes that motivate her while she is doing a mindless activity like laundry.

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