Logan Schulke and his family live across the street from me. Logan is a ridiculously smart young man with an altruistic drive to improve his community; I often see him mowing neighbors' lawns and planting flowers at the local city-owned Clark Park here in Butte, Montana. Logan and I have had a nodding acquaintance--mostly at neighborhood garage sales and Christmas parties--but it wasn't until after he graduated high school, flew halfway around the world and picked up a copy of Fobbit that we had a personal, one-on-one exchange. He sent me this photo, along with the following Facebook message:
I was sitting in a rather small bookstore in southwest England when suddenly I saw a name I recognized on the wall. Amazing how small the world seems some days.
Indeed, Logan, indeed. Just how shrunk-down that globe really is became apparent to me about a week before Fobbit was published when friends--Facebook and otherwise--started sending me photos of my debut novel spotted on their local bookstore's shelves, or on the selfie-end of a camera. Since today marks the two-year anniversary of the book's official launch at Fact and Fiction Books in Missoula, Montana, I thought I'd take a selfish moment and share some of my favorite photos submitted to me over the past 24 months. I'll keep saying it 'til my mouth runs dry and my tongue falls out: "THANK YOU to everyone who has taken the time to buy and/or read my dark little comedy about the Iraq War. You have made me the happiest and luckiest guy on the globe."
|At The Strand in New York City.|
|Ann B. in Scotland was one of my first international readers.|
|Staff Sergeant Graham was brave enough to flash his Fobbit on an Army post.|
|Tracy in Richmond Hill, Georgia needed a little wine|
to help her get through the book.
I'm totally cool with that.
|Mystery novelist Robert K. Lewis (Critical Damage) sent his Fobbit portrait in noir-soaked B&W.|
|At the esteemed Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Lexington, Kentucky.|
|Matthew sent proof that Fobbit is alive and well in Hawaii.|
|Dear friend Robyn sent this from Australia.|
You can't see it, but she has a Vegemite sandwich in her back pocket.
|Bozeman (Montana) friend Angela snapped this picture shortly before|
my appearance at Tattered Cover in Denver.
|The filling in a Hunger Games/Mindy Kaling sandwich, courtesy of|
Joshilyn Jackson (Someone Else's Love Story).
I've always been fond of the number 15.
|I still can't believe Fobbit beat out Legends of the Fall|
in the Great Falls (Montana) Books and Brews Book Club vote.
Thanks, gents! (And better luck next time, Jim...)
|In which young Atticus asks, "Daddy, what's an f-bomb?"|
(This is still one of my favorite Fobbit photos)
|Sally C. snapped this at, of all places, a Kinko's.|
I've always counted on the Tolkien spillover
from the ignorant and/or near-sighted to boost my sales.
|Earlier this year at the Waterstones in Norwich, England.|
|Jayme, a dear friend from high school, took Fobbit on a sightseeing tour of NYC.|
|....and the other.|
|Fobbit photobombs a Michael Chabon reading at Powell's.|
|Double the Fobbit at Politics and Prose,|
taken by Priscille Sibley (The Promise of Stardust).
|Still life on my parents' coffee table, along with Fire and Forget|
(which contains one of my short stories) and the omnipresent bowl of hard candies.
And, finally, I'll leave you with this shot of my son posing with Fobbit in the Savannah, Georgia Barnes & Noble two weeks after its release:
(If anyone else out there would like to see their Fobbit in the Wild photo on this page, email it to me and I'll update accordingly.)