Yesterday I went to the library in Bakersfield. This was the main branch and the biggest library I've been to in years. It seemed to me like there was quite a bit of activity for a Saturday afternoon.

I'd been invited to give a talk about my books and in particular the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. I brought the last three, Calling the Dead, Judgment Fire and Kindred Spirits. Plus, I had copies of Deadly Omen to give to anyone who came.

We were directed upstairs to a small meeting room. (Never a good sign, though I understand why, the air conditioning had to be turned on and it took a shorter time to cool a small room.)

As it turned out, we could've been in an even smaller room. Two women and a young man arrived and along with the librarian and my husband (who periodically nodded off, poor thing has to listen to my talks all the time).

Despite the fact it was small, the people seemed very interested, especially the librarian. Lots of questions were asked, and they seemed reluctant to go home.

Afterward, I had an opportunity to talk to the librarian and she told me that the library system is in trouble just like everything else in California. Librarians have been let go along with other staff. She told me that library usage is also down.
She didn't think people were reading much anymore.

How sad.

As for the reason there was such a small crowd, I have no idea. I know the library had flyers about my event and I certainly publicized it a lot myself to the people I know in Bakersfield.

One talk that does bring in lots of people always is, "How to Get Published Today." Maybe I should stick to that one. I'll just not tell them what the librarian said about people not reading much.



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