Welcome to both haunted Savannah... and 'Haunted Savannah'
My first book, Haunted Savannah, just had a premiere party that turned into quite an event. Thanks to the hard work of my publisher, Bonaventture Books, as well as some pavement-pounding by both myself and my partner-in-crime, Margaret, the party was an overwhelming success. Even with inclement weather the turn-out was around 150, many of whom bought multiple copies. I wound up signing books for most of the evening, and was so swamped with personalizing signatures that I didn't even get a chance to sample the food (amazingly, provided free of charge by Gene Beeco at Moon River Brewing Company). But I am definitely not complaining-- people showing that much interest was outstanding.
The party kicked off at 5:30 p.m. in the downstairs of Moon River, which was also provided gratis. The food smelled excellent, but since I was so busy talking with everyone I never even got near it, and it never occurred to me to ask someone to fix me up a plate. What was being thrust at me, however, was alcohol. After two beers and a shot of... something... I decided to switch to sweet tea just to maintain the power of stringing intelligible sentences together (no pub tour cracks, please). Liquor + empty stomach + speaking in front of a large crowd late in the evening = VERY bad idea! The ice in the tea melted under the lights and it resembled a beer anyway.
My publisher, Cristina, kept a steady flow of people moving in an organized fashion in front of the signing table. Other than a few snafus (uh, the guy who brought his OWN unpublished book and asked me a million technical questions about how to get it into the market springs to mind), the entire evening went off perfectly. I had several people approach me about getting their own story in a follow-up volume (this was an oft-asked question in the evening, along with "How long did this take you?").
I gave a short speech near the end, basically thanking everyone who helped me write the book by providing their time and personal stories. I led a round of applause for them, and it turned into a round of clapping for the book, and for me as well. It was at that moment I realized, I am a published author. My book is released after nearly four years. That is one of those feelings that I will savor for a long, long time.
I then revealed the surprise event: everyone at the party could join us on the pub tour if they so chose, free of charge. Many people opted for this, and I got some real positive feedback about Karl's tour later. But the real story of the evening was... are you ready? We actually had two out-of-the-ordinary things happen during the evening, oddities of a supernatural nature.
The first occurred at the party. As the event was winding down, leaving just a few friends and relatives in the downstairs, Cristina had an experience. She walked back into the basement of Moon River to check the stair access, and had a brush with some sort of presence back there. She was shaking, pale, and covered in goosebumps. I am about as paranormally-sensitive as an anvil, but even I could feel a presence down there.
The other occurred on the pub tour. The tourgoers saw a woman in a white dress and long black hair walking in the midst of Colonial Cemetery. She was witnessed by three people on the tour. Then she vanished from sight, leaving an amazed group standing open-mouthed at the fence. Of course, no one even thought of taking a photo.
I'll post pictures of the book-launch bash at a later time. I'll also be updating this site quite often, with sample stories, anecdotes, or interesting bits of trivia. For more info about my tours, you can visit my website: