Barnes and IgNoble: Saturday 7-9

The manga section at Barnes & Noble at The Sho...
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I’ll try to imagine that there will be at least a few ears to hear. And matter of fact, I’m pretty sure a couple of fellow starving-writer friends will show. But I’d be delighted if there were more who find me in my little out-of-the-way nook at Barnes and Noble in Christiansburg tomorrow night (7 to 9 pm).

Assuming listeners, what might I talk about or read? Hmmm…

Since I take a lot of my cues for topical selection from the season across the years, it seems the coming of June, 2010, might offer some options.

June, 1970: I started graduate school (no writings about that exactly). I got married to my first wife (also my current). I bought my first camera (from whose learning to compose my framing in words starting in 2002). And in June 1970, during my first week of graduate school, marriage, and camera ownership, I brought home a free five-foot rat snake to our married-students’ apartment.

It seems like those written moments might offer some fodder for thematic reading and discussion.

I was talking “making a living from your art” this morning with Floyd County multi-talented artist Ron Campbell. I whined about the B&N “opportunity” where I will most certainly not turn a profit. To do so, I’d have to sell probably 16 books of the two dozen (12 copies of Slow Road Home and 12 of What We Hold In Our Hands) they ordered from the wholesaler because what they don’t sell, they return. And that hurts.

I’m charged three times what I would make in a sale from the store stock for each book returned to the distributor. Unless you designate your book as “returnable” B&N won’t event consider having you for a low-odds event like this.

Ron and both decided our frustration comes from thinking we’ll not lose money. Just consider your creative productions a service to humanity. Or at least something that kept you out of trouble for a few hours. Anything more, you’ll just lose sleep. I gotta take a nap.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Fred,
    I so wish the timing were earlier. With my having to roll out at 4 AM, it’s mandatory that I hit the sack at about 7 PM. Sorry, Bud. I won’t be able to make it.

  2. “Just consider your creative productions a service to humanity.” I vote for that thought, for it is indeed the truth. Folks with the drive to create are such a boon to the rest of us, and would be such a loss to us if they disappeared.
    BTW, are you getting around to using that new printer and doing some matting and framing? It might be a pleasant diversion from your writing efforts.