A week from today, on December 6th, I'll be doing my first in-person book signing at my local Borders store. People with far more experience at this than I have been giving me advice on what to do - i.e., bring chocolate to tempt (or, IOW, bribe) people into visiting the table, have a standee made up with the book cover on it (hubby's volunteered), bring your own 'autographed by the author' stickers (ordered and on their way).
So, check and double-check. I'm also dragging a friend along with me to take pictures and fetch things if I need them, because getting up and down is hard on my creaky knees. Somebody on one of my Yahoogroups said it was a good idea to have a wing-man to help when I get a line of people - and at that point, I was ROFLMAO. A line of people? Who does she think I am, J.K. Rowling?
The last time I was in my local Borders, they had a grand total of seven copies of my book on the shelf. I will be overjoyed if I sell that many. No way will there be a line of people, not for some newbie author trying to flog her first book three weeks before what's shaping up as one of the most dismal Christmases on record.
I'm not trying to cut myself down here, I'm merely being realistic. I heard that Sherry Jones, author of that controversial novel Jewel of Medina, only sold three or four copies at one signing she did - and she's had far more publicity than I have!
If I can get through my two hours of table-time without having a panic attack and manage to sell a few copies in the process, I'll consider the afternoon a success. In situations like this, I've learned it's best to low-ball my expectations.