Sunday, November 21, 2010

What to do when checking out library books for a New York Times Bestselling Author

  1. You figure out how not to make a fool of yourself once you see their name pop up on their library account.
  2. You chat briefly about one of the juvenile books he has selected -- not his own of course -- but luckily one you've read and enjoyed.
  3. You decide, "So do I acknowledge his work? Or do I pretend not to know him?"
  4. All of the above, some of the above, none of the above
Having not served a New York Times bestselling author before while working the circulation desk, I was faced with all of the above questions, and I'm here report that I failed miserably! Except for #2.  I was able to chat briefly about one of his selections, but other than that, my tongue fell out of my head.

In addition to several picture books, he had a copy of Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett, which I read two summers ago when my husband and I spent an extended weekend in Chicago for our anniversary. It was a delightful book and I was, at the very least, able to communicate that to him.  In my head I wanted to say, "Oh, I love your work!" but couldn't because although I have all three of his books on my shelf, and my boys are listening to one of them on audio, I haven't acutally READ any of them.  Then I was going to say, "Thank you so much for donating to our silent auction last year, it was a thrill to receive your donated signed book!" but again, I thought I sounded rather like a bumbling idiot. So instead, I chose the do not say anything option, wished him a good day, and handed him his due date receipt. 

Oh, who was at the library yesterday? None other than Trenton Lee Stewart -- the author of this:

and this:
and this:
Remind me to have a script prepared next time!


Jen said...

Ohhh... I think you should have said something.
Maybe next time, right?

PS Very Cool!

Bailey said...

That's funny! I've read his first book but not the last two. I probably would've chosen the not talking option also to keep from sounding goofy...

Julie said...

I'll bet he would have been kind of gratified to know that you recognized him, but I probably would have done the same!

Julie @ Knitting and Sundries

kristin said...

how cool, Melissa! i didn't know he was local???

Panamamama said...

Oh! My kids ADORE his books. I think they quote them on a regular basis. I don't know what I would have done. I know I waited tables a long time ago and a few famous people sat in my section. Very strange feeling wondering if you should say anything!

Anonymous said...

That is so cool! I'm sure you handled the situation with great aplomb. :)

melissa @ 1lbr said...

Ah, tongue-tied by authors. I'm the same way :)

Sarah said...

I'm a little jealous! I'm a huge fan of his!