Sunday, December 2, 2012

Special Fun at the Barnes & Noble Book Signing

The book signing on Saturday (Dec 1) at the Barnes & Noble store went very well. I did not sell a ton of books, but at least more than last time. Of course, this time I had both books to offer. I was somewhat surprised to sell about the same number of each. I rather assumed that few copies of Boise River Gold County would move, since it has nothing about this side of the state. But then, I suppose the mention of "Gold!" helped.
Chuckwagon at Work.

As you might expect, with the holiday buying season in full swing, there was much more traffic through the store. Although books on Idaho history are not high on many Christmas lists, several people stopped by the talk.

I did sell one book when the conversation turned to where the visitor was from. He had driven in from an area about sixty miles to the northwest of Idaho Falls. When he heard that Before the Spud included the cattle history of where he lived, he bought a book.

But the best fun happened toward the end of the afternoon. In the last chapter of Before the Spud, I write about the “Idaho Century Farms and Ranches.” This is a list kept by the Idaho State Historical Society based on properties that have been “owned and operated in Idaho by the same family for at least 100 years, with 40 acres of the original parcel of land maintained as part of the present holding.”

In reality, some of these holdings go back almost a century and a half – a testament to how well these families have been stewards of their land. Shortly before I decided to call it a day, a couple dropped by to talk about the book. I’m pretty sure they planned to buy one anyway. However, it became a definite sale when we determined that one of them was descended from a century ranch pioneer specifically mentioned in the book. (I won’t say more, to protect their privacy.) For a writer of history, it doesn’t get much better than that.

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