Top 10 best tips for selling your books at a yard sale

I had the good fortune to be part of Stonewall Kitchen Employee’s Yard Sale this morning in York (by invitation from my son, Anthony). I set up my table and brought copies of my book, One Brave Thing.

stonewall yard sale

(Hmmm…maybe next time I should have someone else take the picture so that I can be IN it.)

Anyway, it went very well! I was so happy to see my friend Dawny’s face bright and early at 8am when I arrived. I am here to tell you that it’s WONDERFUL to have the support of friends when you go to do your book events.

Here’s some things what worked for me today:

  1. First of all, bring change. Bring 10’s, 5’s, and 1’s.  The first rule of yard sales (and farmer’s markets, for that matter) is that your first customer will pay you with a twenty. Every time.
  2. Bring index cards and Post-it notes. These are useful for writing down price specials or whatever statements you can think of to attract your potential customers. You can make a tent out of an index card to act as a little standing sign.
  3. Bring tape, because the wind will blow your tented index cards away.
  4. The plastic Godzilla that was on my son’s side of the table attracted a lot of people to our table. Just sayin’.
  5. Don’t bring chocolate to your yard sale if it’s going to be 80 degrees. Or if you do, bring some napkins.
  6. If you have a buddy with you, it helps a lot. It’s nice to have someone watch your table if you need to take a bio break (okay, so maybe I shouldn’t have had that second cup of coffee).
  7. Bring some bags. Many people didn’t want them, but the ones that did want them really did.
  8. Be willing to be flexible on your price (hello, it’s a yard sale). Know your rock bottom price in advance.
  9. Bring more than one pen to sign your books. One pen has a bad habit of going missing right when you need it.
  10. Try to find a shady spot, or bring some shade with you. Someone had a tent thing that I was coveting (not that I would have wanted to have to set it up though). Bring a hat. Bring sunscreen.

Bring your good attitude. Bring your business cards, pens, and book marks (or whatever promotional materials you’ve created).

I hope this helps you sell lots of books!

If you have some ideas of your own, please consider posting them below.

Blue Willow Gift Shop and Antiques is now selling my book!

The wonderful Blue Willow Gift Shop and Antiques in Ogunquit, Maine is now selling my book, One Brave Thing! Next time you are in Perkins Cove, stop in and pick up my book! Tell two friends!

blue willow

Bebe, the Movie

I am working on the idea of making my book One Brave Thing into a movie! Its (probably) only a matter of time before the producers come a-knockin’. After all, other Maine authors have had their books made into movies.


Here’s a little bit of what I’m anticipating:

Warner Brothers and actor/director Nick Cassavetes (my first choice, since he is the son of John Cassavetes who was in one of my favorite Columbo episodes ever, Etude in Black) are auditioning for the role of Bebe of One Brave Thing fame.

As the author, I get limited input with casting but have given them a short list of actresses that I would like them to consider to play Bebe:

Eden Sher, Mae Whitman, Anna Kendrick, Kristen Stewart, and Miranda Cosgrove.

Participate! Vote for the ‘reader’s choice’ actress to play Bebe in One Brave Thing, the movie.

I’ll tell you my FIRST choice after all the votes are in. As if you can’t guess.

For your viewing pleasure, here is Mae Whitman (she’s the brunette) in the movie: The Duff:


Book Review: Shadows on the Coast of Maine

I recently read this book, Shadows on the Coast of Maine by Lea Wait. This is another book that came to me by way of my husband, Bill, who knows what I like.


Shadows is immediately interesting and absorbing. I got it on audiobook because I was planning to do some driving and like to read while I do.:)

I was also attracted to this book because Lea Waite is a Maine author and the story is set in Maine, the state I love…so how could I go wrong? It’s about a couple who make the transition to move to Maine, and then try to get their lives on track, but bad things happen to them, so a friend comes to stay to try to help. After that, everything gets worse. That’s all I’m saying (hey, it’s a mystery, people).

Here’s the thing: I used up a lot of miles and gas listening to this book, because I was enjoying it so much that I just kept going and going and going.

Shadows cover

Reading Shadows gave me the same feeling that I had as a young girl when I read the Nancy Drew mysteries by Carolyn Keene. What is especially wonderful is that this book is part of a series! Don’t you just want to celebrate when you finish a book you love and discover that there are more like it? This is one of those.

Yay! Read this book!

After you finish it, maybe read my book too! One Brave Thing

Book Review: Not Even Dark Chocolate Can Fix This Mess

Not even dark chocolate can fix this mess by Kathy Eliscu is so much fun to read! I started reading this book weeks ago, when it first came out, and then I Not even dark choc coversadly had to put it aside so that I could finish a project (okay, publishing my own book!). But ‘Not Even…’ called to me the whole time, patiently awaiting my return (okay, fine! I lost it! I had to invoke St Anthony to help me find it and now that I’ve finished reading the book, I can see that he had a vested interest in the recovery effort). All I can say is that it was SO worth the wait.
This book is like a page (okay 309 pages-I checked) from my own life. Maybe from your own, too. From the GYN table to the toilet stall (really? Still wrestling with wings or no wings? I win-I quit that s*** years ago! Sorry, TMI? My bad), Tink had me at “hormones”. Once I picked the book up, I couldn’t put it down again. I read it all at once.
Not Even chronicles the daily life of Tink, which is a cacophony of ringing phones, buzzing beepers, and pinging answering machines, underpinned by the love of her friends, family, and fiance.
A good life.
A few notes to author:
Kathy, my nursing cap was white with 1 blue stripe! Or was it 2? Dammit, now I have to get up off the couch and go look…
Oh, and that gray hair trauma thing in Chapter 15 (insert zipped-lip smiley emoticon here)? Total empathy for Tink (again, sorry, TMI? My bad).
Also, I have one word (okay, 2 words) to add to the ‘SHUT. UP.’ list for nurses: ‘Best Practice’.
There are illustrations in the book. A bonus, like free gift with (book) purchase (thank you, Kathy Eliscu! And William D. Eldridge!). My favorite one is on page 133. Don’t ask me why. Art is personal, remember?!
Now I have to go. That “little portable whirlpool tub” for tired feet? Gotta get me one of those…
This book? READ IT.

(This is my review adapted from the one I wrote for

After you finish this book, read my book! One Brave Thing


How to do a book reading and signing

me and kathy eliscu 5.6.16I’m planning to do my first reading from my book One Brave Thing next month, so I thought I’d visit another author’s event to show my support (oh, and to learn a thing or two, maybe) about how to set myself up for success. Kathy Eliscu was at the Falmouth Memorial Library last week reading from her book, Not Even Dark Chocolate Can Fix This Mess. I loved her book (I will be posting a review here soon) and knew I would love her reading, so off we (my husband and I) went.

Right off the bat, I noticed (as I ran into the room at 6:33pm for a 6:30pm start time–I was running late from my daughter’s track meet, my bad) that the little room was filled to capacity. Yep; standing room only. Now this wasn’t my first author reading. I have been to plenty of them and many are not as well attended as this one was. This was a great turnout. Note to self: call the fam and impress upon them the  importance of showing up, and bringing several friends apiece to my reading next month.

The next thing I noticed: the requisite flowers (check) and chocolate (check) were in attendance. I learned these are non-negotiable components of a successful book reading. Don’t ask me how I know this. I am not at liberty to discuss it, but I’m pretty sure it’s the law. I was already planning to have these at my reading, so I was starting to feel pretty good about my debut. Plus, Kathy’s talk was about her book and her mother (Margery Eliscu, who was also a writer) was great-fun and interesting. And, you know, there was chocolate. definitely an enjoyable evening.


And then there was a surprise: there was a local celebrity in the room! Joe Cupo was a meteorologist for WCSH Channel 6 for 37 years and recently retired. That didn’t stop him from answering a few good-natured requests for what the weekend weather was going to be like. He was there with his wife to hear Kathy speak.

Shoot! What local celebrity might unexpectedly duck into my book signing? Patrick Dempsey? Hmmmm….after all, I did volunteer at The Dempsey Challenge last October, and will be volunteering there again this year. I did say nice things about him when I was (email) interviewed by the Lewiston newspaper last year. Plus, he was just in Freeport lounging up against the L.L. Bean boot a week or so ago…I’ll bet he’ll be dying to come to my reading!

Okay, so I invited him.

I’ll keep you posted.



Book Review: What on Earth am I Doing Here?

To be honest, I didn’t want to read this book. Why? Because it’s about a difficult subject: The Holocaust. I have read extensively about this topic, watched movies (okay, with my glasses off for most of them-and I am extremely nearsighted), visited memorials, and discussed it in classes.
I thought I was done.

what on earth am i doing here


And then, my husband told me that I should read this book: What on Earth am I Doing Here?  ‘What for?’ I asked. ‘Because it’s good’, he said.’How do you know about it?’ I asked. ‘I know the author,’ he replied.

Dov Ronen

At first, I said, ‘No thank you,’ ever so politely. However, I don’t like to disappoint my husband, so I decided to read it after all.

I couldn’t put it down. I literally read it in one sitting.

This is a seriously important book. I feel it’s sort of male version of The Diary of Anne Frank. It tells the story of one family’s experience surviving the Holocaust from the point of view of a ten-year old boy. It’s sort of cross between a creative memoir and historical fiction. As horrifying and terrifying as it is for me to read about this subject, this book is different. It has the innocence of the perspective of the young boy who is trying to make sense of the impossible, who doesn’t fully know or understand (as if anyone could) what was happening around him. About how they all miraculously survived with the help of brave friends and their mother’s courage, strength, and ingenuity.

Of course, he saw and experienced some terrible things, some of which are described in the book. In the end though, I was left with a hopeful feeling. It’s a story of how every single member of one family survived one of the worst ordeals in the history of the world.

NOTE: I read this book on Mother’s Day. I didn’t really think it was a natural choice for Mother’s Day reading…until I read it. The mother in this book is an amazing woman, and it’s largely due to her that they all made it through.

I have to say it again: THIS IS AN IMPORTANT BOOK. Read it.

After you read this book,  read my book! One Brave Thing



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