It doesn’t feel quite real to type that out. I want to send thank you notes to everyone: to my editor Jane Johnson, to Jackie for her illustrations, to Steven Raw for his lettering, to Dom for the overall gorgeous cover, and most of all, to each and every reader who bought the book and made this happen. So many of you made this journey with Fitz and the Fool, with the requisite side trips to Bingtown to visit Althea and Brashen, and then the arduous journey up the Rain Wild River with the Dragon Keepers. I worked very hard to write this book, the editorial team out shone themselves to make it a beautiful book, but truth to tell, the READERS are the ones that made this happen.
Often at readings or signings, when readers thank me for the book, I tell them, “Readers are what keep me writing.” That’s true, not just in the artistic sense of wanting to share my stories with someone, but also in the very real sense of the business of how manuscripts become books in stores. In order for books to be published, and for series or trilogies to be completed, writers and publishers rely on readers to buy the books they read. I hope it does not sound crassly commercial, but readers are the ones who determine, ultimately, which books are published, and which writers keep on writing.
And, of course, readers are the ones who put books on the best seller list. No writer can do that, no publisher can do that. Only readers.
So this is my thank you note to each of you. When you buy a new book in the first week it is published, you have a tremendous effect on the writer. You make it much more likely that the book will be noticed on a best seller list, and in turn that makes it much more likely you will see another book by that author! When you post reviews on sites such as Goodreads or Amazon.com, or when you say to a friend, a sister or dad, “Hey, you have to read this book!” you are truly changing the world for the author of that book. This is exceptionally true for new authors, but for ‘established’ authors it is just as important.
So, when I recently sent out bookplates to readers, I made sure to include a thank you note with each one. “Thank you for being a reader.” Those words, however trite they might seem, are sincerely meant.