where the writers are
"Cartel" Book Tour Stop #5: Brazos Bookstore in Houston, TX
Sylvia Longmire with Ioan Grillo at Brazos Bookstore

This morning I flew from Austin to Houston, where I had my first bookstore signing at Brazos Bookstore near Rice University. Actually, it was a joint signing with my fellow Texas Book Festival panelist and author of El Narco, Ioan Grillo. I had very low expectations for the event because we had a few things working against us. First, the signing was on a Monday at 12pm, which translates into not many people wanting to use their lunch hour to come to us. That was the second thing; Brazos is a small (albeit awesome) independent bookstore in a small shopping center with no pedestrian traffic. So, our turnout was only five people.

However, there were several good things. First, Jeremy, the manager, was absolutely fabulous! He was very enthusiastic and helpful, despite the low turnout. Second, we had a great audience who asked lots of smart questions! One audience member was William Martin from the Baker Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. I know Gary Hale, head of Grupo Savant who was recently named a Fellow at the Institute, so I was extremely pleased to make his acquaintance. Another audience member was Dane Schiller, an extraordinary journalist with The Houston Chronicle and a friend of Ioan's. I've known Dane for around four years, so it was really cool to finally meet him in person. We did sell about five books apiece, which is always better than no books :).

Tomorrow I have another bookstore signing; this time it's at the River Oaks Barnes & Noble in Houston. It's a large store in a busy shopping area, right next to a Coldstone and Starbucks. However, I'm on my own for this one. So while I expect a slightly better turnout, I also expect to be working for my supper!