My friends know that without a book "pet" project that I can cultivate and not utter a sentence without recommending, I wither up and die inside.
I am a bookseller: inadvertently in my current job; during my university job; on this here book blog ( and at my Christian book blog ) and every day in most every conversation.
I am a bibliophile and a compulsive bookseller. On facebook, on twitter, I really cannot fathom a world where I am not talking books.
Sometimes I narrow my focus to dedicate time to a particular author or book. I usually have some unwritten qualifiers for my casual "pet projects."
In fact, I was not always cognizant that these were my pet projects but now I deduce standard criteria based on a string of past experience.
First, the author or book in question must be Canadian ( or past Canadian or almost Canadian). I discovered a new word today, canaphile, and I mean to put it to good use. I love my country. So should you.
Secondly, the author or the book can be recognizable but not necessary popular. I have an odd relationship with popular things or things that are two easily noticeable, I like to feel with "pet projects" that I have a bit of a handprint; that I have the ability to recommend something others may never have stumbled across.
Thirdly ( and this is very important as I distinguish my roster of favourite authors and books), the author's personality must complete the work. Books that have no spark of an author's personality are a waste of time and not nearly as fun to read.
(I interrupt this blog post from my hotel in St. John's to inform you that RH Thomson is in a really terrible television movie and I love RH Thomson and need to point him out)
For meeting all of the aforementioned guidelines, pet projects have included Maureen Jennings ( most often her Detective Murdoch series); Arthur Slade ( for Megiddo's Shadow and Dust but mostly in recent years for JOLTED!!!!) and CC Humphreys ( only for Jack Absolute although I did once sell five copies of the French Executioner in an hour) and Lynn Austin ( a Christian writer who I try to infiltrate into the secular market--- a tricky balance, indeed)
Problem is, I need a new pet project. I am actively searching. You now know my qualifiers. Anyone have any hints? I sell. I SELL a lot: in stores I don't work at ( I no longer work in book retail although the way I talk about it you might think I do); to friends; on my blog; on facebook.... just all the time. Every day.
I have a long track record here and LOVE to recommend books. LOVE!
please forward suggestions.
Who are your pet book projects? I might end up discovering some book I might never have rubbed shoulders with otherwise.
NOTE: the book I handsold the most of was definitely "Deafening" by Frances Itani; but it was really popular and a Canada Reads selection so not one of my select few.