It's been a discouraging month as the author of Biking Illinois: 60 Great Road Trips and Trail Rides.
I spend a lot of time (and money) in bookstores, and I usually scan the "Local Interest" section for that familiar goldenrod spine with BIKING ILLINOIS in black letters. The last six stores I've visited have not had a single copy on offer.
A few days ago, I received my twice-yearly royalty check. It was a mere $61 for the first half of 2010.
There was a time when Biking Illinois was almost everywhere, and my royalties were measured in hundreds of dollars instead of tens. I never came close to getting rich or even covering my enormous travel expenses, but at least I was getting something. At least my book was out there.
Considering that my book is now four years old, the economy still sucks, and a couple of competing titles came out this year, I guess it isn't surprising. But I can't help feeling depressed.