Yesterday, I had a little bit of extra time between appointments so I wandered into a small independent bookstore I’ve not frequented in a while. I was just killing some time with no goal in mind. I perused the new releases, staff favorites, etc. All the while, making chit-chat with the proprietor.
Among the new and interesting, I spot The World of Lore: Wicked Mortals by my friend Aaron Mahnke. I ask her if she’s read it herself. She hasn’t. I tell her the history of the Lore empire. Mention that Aaron is a friend. That he’s done quite well for himself and how proud of him I am. I tell him about the things he did before Lore became his thing. I tell her about the books he published before Lore and that they were OK but showed he had a genuine passion about myths and legends and history and how even those were actually a part of the Lore journey before he even realized where that was going and how creativity is funny that way.
We then started talking about ghost stories and that led to a conversation about Broken River by my friend J. Robert Lennon which she had read and enjoyed. I told her about another book of his, Familiar, which she had not read but I very much enjoyed. She searched to see if she had it in stock, did not, but promptly ordered a copy to read and see if it was something she should have on the shelves.
This led me to ask her if she had any of my friend Kelly McCullough’s books in stock. Once again, she did not. I told her about really enjoying reading his latest, Magic, Madness, and Mischief aloud with my wife and daughter, each of us taking a chapter each. I told her my daughter chose it for her book club. That it is a mid-grade book that deals compassionately with issues of metal illness. She ordered that one up too.
It only occurred to me as I left the shop how cool it is that I am to be able to walk into a bookstore and see the work of so many friends there. I revel in being an advocate for their work (though, it helps that it is all work worth promoting). That, maybe, one more person will be turned on to their work and my effort will be rewarded…
Then, I kicked myself for forgetting to tell her about Shawn Mihalik. Gah! Next time, perhaps.