Book Signing, Book Tour, Markets & Festivals

Winterfest 2019

Another weekend and another event at my bookstall. This time was Winterfest 2019 in Hawkesbury, NSW outside of Sydney, Australia. This was also my first time to have all my new banners and signs. From the results and number of people I saw make a beeline for my stall, I know they worked well. As you can see from the pic below, I had my colorful banner, which was designed by myself using the full book covers for all Gorp the Goblin books. Also, the Book Posters showed a bigger picture of the actual book covers so more people could see them.

As I didn’t have the 3rd book on hand, they arrived the day AFTER Winterfest, I put the book poster for that one on the back wall of the stall. People could still see it, but it wasn’t in front of the table. I then lined up the book posters on the front of the table with the book they represented on top. In the photo above, I had them switched and noticed after this pic was taken, I switched afterward.

Being my first year at Winterfest, I really had no idea what to expect. Also, the setup on Friday was in the rain, while it was raining. That was a new experience for me, but once we got the tent and cover up on the frame, it didn’t really matter. I also decided to place a tarp down on the ground to help keep things dry. Always a good thing when books are involved. The following day, I took some stall photos before the fair opened to the public and prepared for what would end up a great day for sales.

Some of the sights and sound as seen from my stall.

Something I appreciated at this fair, was the barkers/commentators from the Information booth. At first, I found them somewhat annoying and it didn’t help that the speaker system place very near my booth was turned way up loud. But as the event went on, they had good medieval jokes and kept things interesting throughout the day. They also encouraged the vendors to come up to the PA and speak about their wares, haven’t seen another event do that before. They also had one of my favorite from back home, American Texas BBQ and BigRed! On Day one I had the Beef Brisket, which was ok, but on Day 2 I went for a RenFaire traditional of a smoked Turkey leg and felt a bit at home like I was at a RenFaire back in the US. I almost never see turkey legs over here in Australia.

Day 1 Meal
Day 2 Meal

I also tried something new at this event, that was camping overnight inside my stall in the rain between Day 1 and Day 2. I awoke the next morning to heavy fog.

The weather eventually cleared up as the day got underway and the rain stopped. On Day 2, I ended up having one of my best book sale days ever. I want to thank everyone who stopped by to say ‘Hi’, which I always encourage. I also have a touching story from one of the younger visitors to my stall:

Today, at my Winterfest bookstall (Australian Medieval Fair), a young boy about 10 years old stopped briefly, looked at my books with a wide stare and continued on without a word. A second later, he returned and stood in front of me. He told me congratulations on becoming an author, well done. He then expressed to me how he wanted to become an author when he grew up. I offered him my card and told him I’d be happy to get him started, which he took and thanked me as he made his way. To me, the moment was innocent and brief, but I found it touching, as I was there hoping to sell a book and a future author found awe and inspiration.

At the end of Day 2, I was left with only 8 books in my entire stock. I had started with a full box on Day 1, so things went quite well and I have a lot of new readers out there discovering Gorp the Goblin for the first time. After everyone went home, it was time to pack and leave the vent a lot of books lighter. For those who missed me at Winterfest 2019, I will have another bookstall at St Ives Medieval Faire in September and will have the complete Gorp the Goblin trilogy on sale there.

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About Jon Ray

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