My first book signing

So, about 15 minutes before my first Dallas book signing, I left a message for my friend Bev, a devout Christian (and wonderful person) who believes the only way to eternal salvation is through Jesus. “Bev,” I said, “I’ve decided you’re right. I must be in hell. I’m standing outside the Borders, and there are 40 chairs set up and one person sitting there. I believe my plane must have crashed this morning, and I’m in hell.”

Indeed, I was not especially optimistic. Forty chairs, a huge poster of my book, a mic stand—and one person in attendance. She was about 50, and I walked up to her and said, “Is Jeff Pearlman speaking today?” Yes, she said. “Well, is his book good?” Yes, she said. “Well, I said, maybe I’ll stick around, too.”

By the time 7 pm came, there were a whopping 12 people in attendance. At first I felt a bit embarrassed—here I am, in Dallas with a pretty high-profile Cowboys book, and all I could muster were 12 people. Then, however, I pulled up a chair (no mic, no stage) and talked for about 25 minutes. And it was wonderful. Great chat; a 16-year-old girl who seemed genuinely interested; about 15 book purchases. Best of all, two women whom I had met at Mike Irvin’s Hall of Fame induction last August came—Michelle and Renee (and Tony, Michelle’s husband).

Anyhow, it wasn’t a disaster. Very small number of people, but a positive overall experience.

And nobody arrived to kick my ass.

** Writer’s note: I accidentally wrote that Marti Sue White, the high schooler who attended, is 14. She is actually 16—and wicked smart. Inquisitive, engaged, attentive. If you’re Marti’s teacher, and you’re reading this, please give her straight-As.