Maybe a little about book tours in general? This wasn't technically a book tour, which will happen when Daughter comes out (Sept 27) and will be my first book tour ever! *nervous excited nervous excited* This was a pre-publication tour, which I hadn't even known existed until quite recently. Basically, Little Brown awesomely brought me out to four cities to have some lunches and dinners with booksellers and librarians, who would hopefully like me and like my book and want to help usher it into the world :)
Well, it was a whirlwind, and it so fun. There was even an evening in Chicago (Aurora, actually), with teenagers and teachers, many of whom had already read Daughter, some of whom were midway. That was cool.
This was hosted by Anderson's Books in their warehouse, and was a terrific informal evening. (With pizza!) They have amazing outreach into the schools, and I have heard such cool things about their events.
Chicago was the most *leisurely* spot on the tour, with two nights and quite a few free afternoon hours ... most of which were spent writing, though there was that wander I already posted, and with this out my window ...
... how could I stay indoors?
I met up with local writer James Kennedy for breakfast. Check out the sheer decadence:
(I did not have that.)
James is the author of the brilliant The Order of Odd-Fish, which is seriously the most imaginative and strange read I've had in such a long while. He is also the co-mind behind the 90-Second Newberys, which I will post about soon.
From Chicago it was off to New York, arriving at 2 am at the hotel to discover this in my bathroom ...
Giant disco tub.
It was a thing of beauty. Alas, I had no time for leisure. My one day in New York went like this: lunch-interview-dinner, bam! I did have time to enjoy a coffee, though. There was something so lovely in the way they served it, in its own mini silver pot, with a little pitcher of hot milk. I felt pampered.
Getting spoiled for nice hotels, guys. These that lovely publicist Lisa selected were a serious cut above what Jim and I usually book for ourselves!
Lunch at Mesa Grill, Bobby Flay's restaurant, which was YUMMY. These folks are from Little Brown and Barnes and Noble -- a very cool opportunity to learn a little more about how B&N works!
And also to pick the brain of Benjamin Ruby, B&N's YA buyer, about ...
|(with Shawn Foster, LLBYR Sales Director)|
... George R R Martin, silly. What else? Ha ha. Seriously. A Game of Thrones etc came up at every single stop (more dramatically in San Francisco than anywhere else; more on that later). It has the book world by the throat right now. In a good way.
Here are, l to r: Megan Tingley, publisher of LLBYR, Alvina Ling, editorial director (and my editor!), and Lisa Sabater, publicist. Aren't they lovely?
And here we have ... the cake that got away. Sigh. Faced with a nearly impossible decision between coconut and chocolate for dessert, I went with chocolate. Mistake. I mean look.
This piece belonged to Liz Sheier, Editorial Director of Digital Content for B&N, who graciously allowed me to pilfer a bite. And then I bit off her hand and stole the whole rest of the piece, dragged it under the table like a hyena with a zebra carcass, made wet eating sounds for about three minutes, reapplied my lipstick, and reemerged as if nothing had happened. Everyone was pretty polite and let it pass, though I do think I caught Liz casting me a recriminating glance over the stump of her missing hand.
So, moving right along ... back to the Little Brown offices for a video interview for the upcoming Daughter website. Aaaand the rest of that hour is a blur. I honestly could not tell you what I was asked or what I replied. We will know in due time if it is coherent. It was my first talk-right-to-the-camera-and-act-natural interview, and it was scary! There have been these moments lately of near-panic, like: I do not know how to do this thing! Or: I am not someone who leads a conga line! Or whatever. And the thing is, you just don't hesitate; just do the thing. Pretend to be someone brave and see what happens.
It seems to be working. But maybe it's a case like drunk people believing themselves fluent in a foreign language, when they're not fluent, they're just drunk :) I'll let you know once I see the interview (will watch through my fingers no doubt).
The technical team was so nice.
I even got de-shiny-fied.
A ramble around the office, and here is Stephanie from Marketing with ... if you look closely ... a still from the Daughter book trailer on her computer. It's really funky and different. Can't wait to show you!
In the halls, Jessica, Ames, Melanie, Faye, and Lisa, lovely ladies of Publicity:
The halls themselves, land of book-makingness:
Back to the hotel for a nap, pause to admire the Ferrari, then out to dinner with NY librarians!
As I said after ALA, librarians are so awesome. Have you hugged a librarian today? (I haven't, not today anyway.) In attendance were Jennifer Hubert Swan who interviewed me at BEA, and Karyn Silverman, both of Little Red School House and Elizabeth Irwin HS. It was with Karyn at this event that I GRRM'ed out. She was going to the book signing for A Dance for Dragons the very next evening, lucky. Also, an fantasy guru, she is going to help me compile a Fantasy Education List for my blog! That is, a list of fantasy must-reads, because I have so many gaps in my education. Coming soon!
At each table, Lisa decorated with wishbones, feathers, and beads. Such a cool touch.
Finally, a drink at the Algonquin with Ames, Zoe, and Alvina of LB:
So beautiful. The Algonquin is this famous literary hangout from the 1920s -- most famously Dorothy Parker was of the "Algonquin Round Table." Our first book conference to NY Jim and I had a cocktail here, so it was nice to go back. Love this painting by Natalie Asensios:
And how cool is it that the Algonquin has a lobby cat? Matilda is her name, and we spied first her mouse toy, and then her twitching tail. Never got a good look at the dame herself, but here she is in a pilfered photo:
That's New York, and that's it for now. Exhausted. Enfeebled. Sorry for the dearth of links.
Thank you hugely ...
... to Little Brown for this amazing opportunity. Seriously.
I do not hold this luck lightly in my hands. I really can't believe it. Dreams coming true. No words.