June 20, 2013

"Will You Sign My Hand?"

Email from reader: "I love your stuff, but I was wondering if you are ever serious?"

Answer from me: "Me? Serious? No. Never."

The truth is that I'm probably more serious and thoughtful than I am humorous in real life. The fact that I'm an introvert by nature comes as a complete shock to most people, unless they know me very well. I can stand in front of a group of 5,000 people and speak on any given topic and have only the fewest of butterflies in my belly. But if I sit down one on one with someone--anyone--I will have to show great restraint to not wet myself. It's just who I am.



This holds true for my book signings as well. I love meeting everyone, really I do, but I'm a ball of nerves, y'all.

Take for example last weekend when I was in Bishop Arts District at Bishop Street Market selling and signing books. I was meeting a lot of people who had seen me on KDFW and stopped to visit. It was fun, but it also made me very nervous.

One woman walked up to my table and said, "Are you Shitty Mom?" I told her I was not, but my book was along the same lines as Shitty Mom--more humorous stories than advice, though.

"Well," she scoffed, "I hate Shitty Mom." She did take my bookmark, though. That's why I get nervous. I think they'll accost me and hate me, and I'll have to fight back, and it'll get ugly.

That's never happened, though. but it could.

Typically, I have to actually engage people in order to get them to stop if they didn't already know me. (Sometimes even if they did know me. My aunt and cousin circled the block three times before I convinced them to stop.)

My aunt and cousin finally stopped--we all had coral on!

My engaging comment is, "These are some of the stories I overshared on the Doctor Oz show." It's gratuitous, but it worked. And it totally worked with Jeremiah and his momma.

Jeremiah was about 8 years old, and he and his momma were out shopping that hot Saturday morning.

"I have a funny book for ya!" I started with the butterflies going crazy in my belly.

Jeremiah popped up, "Were you on the morning news yesterday?"

"Yes, I was!" I grinned because I can talk to kids much easier than I can talk to adults.

"I saw you," he said, "Are you famous?"

"Well," I grinned, "Not really famous, but I have been on the Doctor Oz show. Many of the stories I shared are in this book." Always go for the sale, right?

Jeremiah's jaw dropped. "Doctor Oz? The Doctor Oz who is in New York City?"

"Yep!" I grinned.

Jeremiah glanced sideways at him mom, then back at me, then back at his mom, then back at me. The whole time, his mouth was wide open in shock.

"He's a big Doctor Oz fan," his mom explained.

Then Jeremiah stuck his hand out to me, "Will you sign my hand?"

I laughed and said, "I'll do you one better--I'll sign a bookmark just for you."

To Jeremiah, 
Thanks for being my friend. 
Love, Heather Davis, TMI Mom

He walked away clutching the bookmark. It was totally worth stepping out of my comfort zone for that...

~~~

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