Although it was eight years ago I remember vividly my decision NOT to give away any more of my books. Restless from the Start, my first baby, had recently been accepted for availability at one Barnes & Noble store in Sarasota, Florida because I would be doing a lecture on publishing and promotion there. The head office would put the book into their computer system and five copies would be ordered for Sarasota.
As long as Restless was going to be in the computer I felt I could call other Barnes & Noble stores in Tampa, St. Pete, Clearwater and Brandon. All the stores said “yes” to a signing but one manager asked to see the book.
“Could you send me a copy of the book. No, no, no…send me two. Oh, wait a minute,” said the manager, “could you send me four copies?”
As a brand new author, so proud of my accomplishment, could I say “no” and risk losing the signing? I knew that signing was doomed from the start. I could never recoup giving away four books for one signing. It was at that precise moment I decided NEVER to send out free copies and I have been good to my word since that day.