Wednesday, August 22, 2012

LDS Booksellers Convention 2012

I promised that I would share some pictures from the LDS Booksellers Convention I attended two weeks ago. Felice Austin and I went to promote our new book "The Gift of Giving Life:Re-discovering the Divine Nature of Pregnancy and Birth" and to try to woo some bookstores into carrying it.  We were pretty successful.  We sold multiple copies to about a dozen or so independent book stores and caught the interest of all the big ones! Hopefully within the next month or so you should see it popping up in Deseret Book stores and in some of the other independent LDS booksellers. We should have a list on our website in the next little while with a list of which stores are carrying the book, so that if you want to get it for a gift for a last minute baby shower you could just go pick one up! There is also a good chance that I and the other authors will be doing some book signings at Deseret Book and other LDS book stores around the country in the next few months, so keep your eyes open!

The best thing about going to this conference was that we had all the right people in the right place. It was definitely worth the money we spent on the booth in order to make the contacts we did. The fact that now most of the major LDS booksellers in the US (and Honduras!) are aware of our book was invaluable. Felice and I did a meditation for prosperity each morning before the conference and it totally worked. So many times during the two day event we just felt like the Lord was pouring out blessings on us-- mostly in the form of good contacts and information. We learned so much about publishing and bookselling that we didn't know and it was awesome.

Me giving "the pitch" to an interested bookseller

We really threw our booth together last minute (thanks to our co-author Sheridan) but it turned out beautiful. Everyone loved the fresh flowers and the bright colors. Felice and I were an awesome team. Felice was an expert at "roping" people into our booth to talk to us and then I would sell them on the book. Someone even claimed that Felice was using a Jedi Mind Trick on him (Felice: " You look like you want to talk to us." Him: "You know I want to talk to you") because she was that good. Between the two of us I felt like we really made a splash and represented our book and our message well.

Felice Austin and I at our beautiful booth

By the end of the second day my legs were killing me!
 The other best part of the conference were the other vendors that we met, especially the beautiful woman who had the booth next to us.

Felice, Michelle (our next door neighbor booth) and I
Michelle owns a company called Personal Ponderings that makes and sells scripture journals, as well as literary and personal journals. I was so impressed with her journals and she gave me one to review on my blog. I will be sharing more about her journals in a few days, but in the meantime if you are interested in scripture journaling I'd check out her website. She was such an amazing woman and we really had such a good time being next to each other. I feel like that was just another one of our prosperity blessings.

 I also got the chance to meet Katherine Nelson, whose new album I recently reviewed and who wrote a post for me about her experiences portraying Emma Smith. She was at her recording labels booth to sign and give away copies of her CD to booksellers. We have exchanged several emails over the last few months and so it was so good to finally meet her. She was even more beautiful and gracious in real life than I expected.

Oh, and I have to tell you about the absolutely best part of the whole conference. When I was doing the speed dating event I felt really good about how I did, but I felt like I had blown one table because as soon as I started talking about the book this young woman and the woman next to her started to cry. The older woman even put her arm around the younger woman and I just felt awful. I was sure that this young woman had just had a miscarriage or had just found out she could never have children and here I was with a birth book. It was really awkward and I stumbled through my words at that table. I was sure I had totally offended her. Yet, later at the conference that older lady approached me, and thanked me. She told me that her daughter was young, pregnant and not married and that she had been struggling spiritually for a long time. She said that the reason they had started to cry was because as soon I pulled the book out they had both  felt the spirit so strongly. She said it had been a long time since her daughter had felt the spirit and she knew that this book was a gift from Heavenly Father for her. She said she wanted me to have the statue to remind me that God had sent her manna from heaven in the form of our book.


It was such an incredible experience and as I watched this young girl just radiate joy as she took our book it just made me realize that somehow I had gotten to be an instrument in God's hands to remind her that she was loved and that God was aware of her and her unborn baby. I will be forever grateful for that experience, and it is so sweet to have this beautiful reminder of this little miracle in my home.

All in all the conference was such a good experience. It was two long exhausting days (and I missed my babies) but I am so glad that we did it.  I am also so glad that Felice was there with me. I sure love that lady and it was wonderful to get to spend more time with her. It is amazing how she feels more like a sister now than a friend. I guess emailing someone multiple times every day for three years will do that to you.

 I just love this picture that Felice snapped of us unwinding in my front yard after the first day of the conference. We were so exhausted that first night that we literally just came home and laid on the floor in my basement for about an hour. We had given it our all and just had nothing else! It actually really made me feel more sympathy for my husband and how hard it must be for him to come home and jump right into family life after having been away all day. I think it was also really good for me to have a few days away from my kids because it reminded me that I really would rather be with them all day than working somewhere else. Which is something I NEVER EVER thought I would say before I had kids, but these two days away just reminded me that right now I really have the best job in the world!

Thank you to everyone who has helped our book be a success! It has only been out for about 3 months and we have almost sold 700 copies already! It is just so amazing to see how the Lord has used it to bless women's lives and healed their hearts. If you haven't seen our book yet keep your eyes open for it-- it should be in a book store near you really soon!


  1. I'm so grateful that you and Felice were on the front lines for this. Thank you for all of your work. I love that the book could touch woman's heart. How kind to have called it "manna from heaven." The whole experience of being a part of the project has made it manna from heaven for me too. Love you Heather!

  2. Wow! What a wonderful experience for you, your book, your co-authors, and all the lives you've touched. Congratulations and thanks again for your example of always including the Lord in your life.

  3. Wonderful! I'm so excited and happy for you ladies. The book is a beautiful gift for all women and I hope many people buy it.

  4. You ladies were awesome to take on that responsibility. It sounds like it was well worth it and we will be able to share our book with more women now!

  5. I wish you good luck with your book!!! I wish that they would actually pass this book out to many women. It is sad that some women can not form a bond with their babies. I was in medical billing and one insurance company (won't mention name of course) was going to approve more ultrasounds because they wanted the mothers to bond with the babies more-in a world where it is so easy to have babies for a paycheck. They believe through studies that some women may not have as much depression or lack of bonding with their babies. I believe that a book like this may also pump the women up to realize how special it is.

  6. When I click on your Old Testament tab, it is saying that the content does not exist. I wanted to see if you had anything written on Michal and David from 1 Samuel.

  7. Heather,
    I loved this post....brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for being who you are and sharing yourself with all of us too! I LOVE your statue....what a gift and a blessing. But more so, to be able to touch the lives of three people and to see it right there and then be reminded every day... tender mercies for sure!

  8. The part about the young expectant girl gave me chills. . . . What a beautiful testament to the power that God has in teaching His children through His words, and the words of His servants. Beautiful, Heather. :)

    Also, I nominated you for an award on my blog today. You don't have to accept it, but I just wanted to let you know. :)