This week’s blog is by Treva Hall Melvin, whose YA mystery, Mr. Samuel’s Penny, was released this week.

“A smart, funny pleasure, as satisfying as sipping lemonade on the front porch with a favorite grandparent.” -Kirkus Reviews

Treva, originally from New York City, is a lawyer who now lives with her husband and two kids in Philadelphia. 

Yesterday was bitter-sweet for me. Publication day.  I couldn’t wait to go to see my book on the shelf at my local Barnes and Noble. But for some reason I could hardly move from the couch.  I tried reading, watching Hercules on Demand, even Nickelodeon for a while!  Nothing seemed to calm my nerves—until I remembered.  November 11 was my deceased mother’s birthday.  I tried to choke down the tears, but then I finally let them go and fell to my knees.  After that I was able to stand up and face the world.

That’s what it took.

Cover image of Mr. Samuel's Penny

Cover image of Mr. Samuel’s Penny

That’s all it took.

So around five o’ clock, my husband and I rounded up the kids and headed to Barnes and Noble.  I cautiously took the escalator up to the second floor where the Teen section was .  I’d been there too many times with my daughter not to know every inch of it.

“Here we are…now where is it?”  I thought to myself.

But my book was nowhere to be found.  Under M? Nothing. H? Nothing. Finally, I looked around a corner and there it was!  A full table with maybe thirty books, and in the middle my photo on a placard, next to one of the cover.

The table was beautiful, but I was worried that people wouldn’t be able to find my book. I just didn’t understand why there were not a few copies in the Teen section.

An employee saw me standing there, ready to explode, and asked if she could help. I told her who I was and explained the situation.  It turned out that she was a substitute teacher, and knew my daughter from school. She quickly went to get the night manager.

Together they calmed me, and assured me that they would make it right.  As we looked again in the Teen section, I nearly gasped when I saw a copy of my book!  Apparently, four or five copies had already been sold, and the single remaining book had flopped over and was hidden by the books on either side.  I cried some more as the ladies loaded my space up with more books.

Treva Hall Melvin, author of Mr. Samuel's Penny.

Treva Hall Melvin, author of Mr. Samuel’s Penny.

Two other girlfriends showed up and took pictures with all of our kids and a few of me.  It was great.  Even as I was leaving the store, a friend that I hadn’t seen in a year or so bought one right then and there and asked me to autograph it.

I realized that my bitter-sweet day was not so bitter after all. I had my family and friends around me. And as sure as I’m writing this blog, I know that my mom was there too.

Thanks everyone at the Poisoned Pencil for all your hard work for making this a most memorable and wonderful day.  One that I will never forget.