So, this writer walks into a book store. She has a mooch about; she knows the store well. She often comes in, to browse (books are so expensive). It’s one of the largest book selling chains in the country. Nicely fitted out, and the staff are always friendly. It must be nice to work in a book store, surrounded by all those lovely books.
The writer picks up the latest copy of The Artist magazine. She’s written a few articles on behalf of clients which have been published in this particular periodical. Not that the artists get paid – it’s for their publicity. Nor does she get a mention, but at least the clients pay for her time. She has an idea for another of her clients.
But that’s not why she came today.
Clutching the magazine, she approaches the desk. One of the assistants intercepts her. “Can I help you?”
She takes a deep breath. “Can I just ask you..?”
The assistant smiles encouragingly. He’s a nice-look young man; intelligent, open-faced.
“Can I just ask you if the store supports Indie Authors?” (There, she said it).
The assistant smiles kindly; a little apologetically. “No, no, never. It’s all done by Head Office…with the publishers, you know.” He pauses. “There was this one time though…”
“Go on,” the author says, leaning forward, as if some major confidence might be shared; some key to unlock…
The assistant is speaking. “The lady’s books were selling very well. There was a lot of publicity. She was selling her books out of the boot of her car.” He shakes his head. “It was a bit greedy really. You know, on the part of the store. They realised they could make money out of her. It didn’t last long.”
The author nods. “So you have to be popular first?”
The assistant nods and smiles sympathetically (pityingly?)
The author nods. “I’ll just pay for this then.” (At least she asked. The ground didn’t swallow her up). She leaves the book store, head held high.