Let’s Talk with Cheryl Hollon

Decisions and Changes

by Cheryl Hollon

This is day 115 out of 365. Yikes, that means that this year is almost one-third done – how did that happen? I haven’t yet written down my goals for this year. But that’s another story.

This is a year of change for me. Big changes. We’ve put our house up for sale and moved into an apartment in downtown St. Petersburg. In the media, it’s called DTSP or simply the Burg. But in either case, we love the urban lifestyle and embrace the freedom that comes with renting.

I’m not the only one in my circle who is moving. A local book store that has been a champion for my books and a friend to readers, Books @ Park Place, is moving to a new location at 6800 Gulfport Boulevard S., Unit #113, in the South Pasadena Shopping Center.

I’m excited because their new location is much closer and has a higher rate of walk-in traffic. This is good for a local bookstore.

I’ve known the owner, Nancy Alloy for several years now. She’s the perfect bookseller. She knows what I like to read and has several new recommendations for me each time I visit the store.

We also usually have a rollicking good gossip about whatever is the latest in the publishing industry. Who has a new book deal? Who has an unexpected best seller? Great fun for us both.

She also has great book signing events that feature a wide variety of authors ranging from poets, horror, self-published, rescue organizations, board game night, and movie book night.

Here is another great reason to visit — book store dog Watson.

Book @ Park Place has offered me an opportunity to host a mystery book club once a month. I’m so honored to be asked, but I’m a little hesitant as well. Would I pick good books? Can I lead a good discussion? Would anyone show up?

That’s my question this week. Should I promise to be a loyal attendee? Or should I say yes to hosting a mystery book club?

Here’s a link to her website:  Books @ Park Place 

Also, we have a new contest and book giveaway every month, and our May contest will run May 1-18, so bookmark our site for frequent access!

Comments

  1. Lois Crockett says:

    What a wonderful opportunity to interact with readers. An understudy is a must. And having guests or guest hosts could broaden the groups’ perspective as well as give you a breather a few times a year. Especially the owner of the bookstore. How does she perform that magic of finding that “just right read?” I’d give my eye teeth for a pal like that.

    • cherylhollon says:

      Lois, I think that know what books will appeal to you is a bookseller’s gift to readers. It must be magic, but she always finds me something amazing.

  2. If you have the time, I think leading a book discussion group would be much fun. Just be sure that you appoint an understudy for when you have book deadlines or other writing commitments.

    • cherylhollon says:

      An understudy! What a great idea. Not that I ever get put in ‘book jail’ because I have a looming deadline. Oh no, not me! LOL.

  3. It will cement relationships with a specific group of readers and with other writers, if you ask them to participate (see how Nikki handles one monthly via skype). If you do it, what can you lose?

    • cherylhollon says:

      Thanks! I wasn’t thinking of it that way. I’m worried about the extra work, but new friendships? I’m there!

  4. Maggie Toussaint says:

    There’s a little voice in my head that has a negative thought when new things come along. It’s not so much that I can’t do xyz but there’s no time to do it. Adding something to my schedule means there’s less time for the other stuff I want to do. BUT, sometimes I’ve taken the plunge anyway and I’ve never regretted it. Leading a group of mystery readers will give you firsthand interaction with what they look for in books. How many writers would pay for that kind of insight? Darn near every one of them. However, I suspect the true benefit will be in the friendships you make with people that share your interests. It’s never too late to make a friend! Take the plunge!

    • cherylhollon says:

      Thanks for the vote of confidence, Maggie. We share similar feelings about taking on something new. I’ve made a lot of life changes lately but they’ve seemed to energize my writing rather than suppress it. Who knew?

  5. You’d be the perfect person to lead a mystery book club. Maybe some of the readers here could offer suggestions as to what they like in a book club. As for changes, Murder on the Beach mystery bookstore has also moved to a new site in Delray Beach adjacent to the public library.

    • cherylhollon says:

      I’m excited about taking on the book club. I know it will expand my reading circle and I hope that will influence my writing — in a good way, of course. I’m planning to visit the new location for Murder on the Beach this fall.

  6. authorlois says:

    Cheryl, go for it! It should be lots of fun to host a mystery book club.