I realized I was standing at the end of a line that meandered clear across the room. We were in line, I was told, to have books signed. This, I was told, was a book-signing party. Not for the public, just for Hachette employees, but I was welcome to stay if I liked. Someone came over and asked for my name, wrote it on a sticky note, and stuck it on a big hardcover book which they then put in my hands. They said it was so the author would be able to read my name and inscribe the book accurately. Eventually I reached the head of the line. And there sat Kate Atkinson. Signing books. “I have to tell you,” I said, “Museum is my number one favorite novel of all time.” She smiled. She said that was delightful to hear. I told her how much I appreciated her sitting here, signing books for us. She thanked me back. She was utterly charming, and I was not at all surprised. I did not mention that the reason she was here, the reason Hachette had decided to hold this impromptu gathering, on this day, a Wednesday afternoon more than a month after the book’s release, at this time (just as our little meeting broke), in this room (just outside where my meeting happened), was that it was my birthday. I didn’t say any of that. But there you go. I was one of the last in line. By four o’clock, minutes after she signed my new copy of A God in Ruins and we had our briefest of chats, the event was over. It was the best birthday present I could have possibly dreamed up. Which, I suppose, is exactly what happened. When you create the reality in your mind, there’s no limit to what the universe will rearrange to make it happen. And really, isn’t every day your birthday? n JOHN DAVID MANN is Editor in Chief Emeritus of Networking Times.
John David Mann is coauthor of the national bestseller The Go-Giver. Earlier this fall, a new edition was released, featuring the original text (unchanged) with new material added, including a foreword by Arianna Huffington, an introduction by the authors, a Readers Discussion Guide, and a Q&A with the authors. This new edition also sports an endorsement on the back cover from Glenn Beck, who says, “The Go-Giver is a must-read for anyone who wants to change the world.” A new edition of The Go-Giver’s companion parable, It’s Not About You, will be released in March 2016. This edition has been significantly rewritten and also been given a new title: The Go-Giver Leader.
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