Friday, February 18, 2011

Huzzah for Independant Bookstores!

Yesterday the Hatke Family went to Politics and Prose where I had my very first book signing. (Anna did a nice little write-up about it on her blog).

I’ve heard that Politics and Prose is one of the best bookstores in the country and after my visit there I believe it. The truth is, though, that even though I’ve been talking to and entertaining kids for years I was still terribly nervous beforehand. And my heart sank when I saw them setting up a projector and I realized that I hadn’t thought to bring my computer (you can project graphic novel pages up on a screen and do a pretty cool live reading). One of the reasons I was nervous is that the week before I had been listening to author interviews on the Barnes and Noble website and all the authors seemed to have a horror story about their first signing.

But we set up a big drawing pad and the moment I was up in front of the kids (a wonderfully modest-sized group), talking and drawing, I felt great and everything went splendidly. Another cartoonist, David Hagen, even happened by chance to wander in and stayed for my talk about the "Three Secrets of Comics."

Afterward we had a little Hatke Family Homeschool Field Trip to the National portrait gallery. Definitely an artistic gem in Washington DC.

Oh, and tomorrow I will be signing at the Main Street Book Company in Front Royal from 1pm to 3pm.

Also, I made a comic about the day (you can click the images for a larger version):





Enjoy the weekend!

15 comments:

Tim said...

Very nice! Sounds like a great first book signing. I'm still hoping for a signing/reading close to Philadelphia. Baltimore, maybe?

Jeanie W said...

Thanks for leaving some signed copies in the store. I walked over tp P&P today and bought one. I'm reading it now. What a fantastic book! I love it!

Ben Hatke said...

Hey Tim! You know, I bet I could arrange soemthing in baltimore...

Jeanie! So glad you're enjoying it!

Blaise said...

Great way to tell us about the book signing! You and your family are so freak'in cool! +Peace!

Red Herring Jeff said...

I googled "3 secrets of comics" and came up with nothing...:( Now I'm sad that I don't live in VA anymore, and wasn't able to make it to the talk. Ha-ha-ha! Sounds like you all had a great day, and congratulations on a successful first signing!

Ben Hatke said...

The 3 Secrets of Comics is just something I made up. They are the three basic things I think about the most while drawing/writing comics.

One of the things is gesture and for that I put on a "neutral" mask (a mask with no expression) to show how you can communicate emotions and ideas with just body language.

R. A. said...

Christopher Paolini had to do ten backflips because he can't write without stealing.

Annie said...

LOL, is that a tear?? I'm laughing so hard right now!

Anonymous said...

One thing to remember when you have to do a talk and the audience isn't primarily kids...adults are just big kids. Why else would they be there?

David Hagen said...

It was a special treat listening to your talk and seeing all the bright engaged faces. Can't wait to read more of Zita's adventures! Best of luck!

Mike Rhode said...

I'm totally bummed that I missed this - I don't work all that far from P&P.

Ben Hatke said...

Thanks David!

And I'm sorry you missed it too, Mike, but the nice people at P&P said they'd like to have me come back and I'm sure I'll do something else down toward DC before toooooo long.

Arkonbey said...

Woot!

I'll also add that, unlike you, Paolini is awful.

Mrs. Green said...

This comic is incredibly funny. I love that you can draw about yourself! Zita rocks and I have her in each of my three elementary school libraries.

Ben Hatke said...

Thanks Mrs. Green!