If you’ve planned an event before, you know that it can be quite stressful. You wonder: will the word get out fast enough? Will people come? Will it run smoothly? Will the result be what you’d anticipated? One event takes a lot of time and energy, so hosting four events in 30 hours is foolhardy, unless you’re in the Sault working with a great group of people.
On that first question, “Will the word get out fast enough?” I have nothing but praise for the Sault’s local media. Radio, print, online, and TV media are all so welcoming and helpful at getting the word out in advance or covering it after the fact.
When Terry Grant came to town for the launch of his new book: Mantracking: The Ultimate Guide to Tracking Man or Beast, we were on air with Q104 and Easy Rock 100.5 with just a couple days notice. Not only was the coverage great, but it was fun hanging out with them until they were ready for us on air. Print, Internet, and television also gave us great visibility for Mantracker, the book, and me as his local sidekick/co-writer.
Our local media folk are professional, fast, flexible, and overworked. I can’t stress enough how lucky I feel that we have a lot of locally-generated content, even if it is on the decline.
I never should have worried about whether people would come, because I have had such positive experiences locally in response to my writing, and people love the Mantracker television series too.
Thank you to all of those of you that requested that I sign your books; pulling me out of the shadows and into the limelight for a brief moment. It was such an honour to be able to sign your books.
The third question, “Will it run smoothly?” is a big one, but with a lot of advance planning, things usually go relatively according to plan. With four events though, things can get hectic. That’s when working with good people is key.
The owners and staff at Rivercity Motorsports were awesome, and they stepped up to the plate to help out with our payment processing. It’s a great store up there and I didn’t even know that they had as much winter clothing as they did.
Sault Search and Rescue also sent two volunteers on their own time to help with the line-ups, and let people know what SAR does. (It was only in researching the book that I found out that they are funded solely through donations — hint, hint).
Then it was off to the SpeakEasy at Algoma University. It was nice to see so many of my former and current students there, and we were kindly welcomed that night by the bar staff and the university registrar, Dave Marasco.
The Sault Ste. Marie Professional Fire Fighters Union even surprised Terry and I with a cake that looked just like the book cover.
Two dollars of each book sold locally is being donated to the Fire Fighters’ charity fund and the brothers that helped at the events were a great help during the rush times and also provided us with moral support.
On Saturday, at Canadian Tire a lineup was there before we arrived with the books and the store gave us an area decked out with cool hunting and camouflage accessories. It was so effective in fact that one Mantracker fan missed that Terry Grant was right in front of him: “I didn’t even see him there – I was too busy looking at the deer stuff.” To which Steve quickly replied “I’ve heard you can’t see the forest for the trees, but that’s a new one: you can’t see the Mantracker for the deer.”
The Soo Greyhounds’ staff at the Essar Centre were also truly helpful. It was a flawless puck drop, we had a great time meeting fans and Dash the mascot and even got to take in an exciting hockey game.
There are so many more thank-yous that would be appropriate for all the book launch events, including to Phil Lemieux and his lovely “sidekick” Kathy, not to mention to my favourite cowboy who let me bring his tracking experience to the world.
However, my biggest thank you still goes out to those of you that helped answer that forth questions: ” will the result be what you’d anticipated?” And yes, we sold all of the books we had hoped to.
So to everyone that made it so much easier to leave each event, because our load of boxes was much lighter … my back and I thank you very much.
We’re so grateful for your support. For those of you that were unable to come say hi and pick up the book, you can still order books online at www.mantracking.ca or at Rivercity Motorsports.