Nick at Oberon gave me a heads up last night that Purolator would be bringing my book today. I spent an anxious morning thinking things such as, do they have my new address? What if I miss them? What if it gets lost?
But it’s here. It’s so…I don’t know what. Cool. Weird. Unreal.
According to the Canadian Bookseller’s Association, Saturday, November 15th, 2008 is “Independents Day” — a celebration of independent bookstores, kicking off a year-long campaign called “Independents Matter”. Owl’s Nest Books has invited me to participate in their celebration, which will feature local authors in the store all day. It sounds like a nice, low-key kind of event, “a party with books”, as Judith described it to me. Sounds like my kind of party. So if you can’t / won’t / are not allowed to come to my launch at Memorial Park Library on the 13th, here’s your chance to get your own signed copy of Love Minus Zero and support a fine independent bookseller. Win – win, eh? I’m scheduled to be there at 11:30, and Owl’s Nest is located in the Britannia Shopping Plaza, 815A 49th Avenue SW. Here’s a link to their page:
Other news: no books yet. I’m now working on the minutae of the launch, things such as test driving false eyelashes. I have determined they are not going to work for this event. I used to wear them for performances in the band days, but now I just feel like a female impersonator when I wear them. That’s not how I want to feel! Also, the lipstick I bought this morning is too dark. What’s up with that? It looked fine on my arm. But on my lips, it makes me look like a cranky old German lady (specifcally, my great-grandmother). Eek.
Oh, well. Tomorrow is another day.
Lunched with my pal Rona yesterday and she convinced me to check out the poster for my event on the notice board at Calhoun Library. Wow, there it was, among the posters for M.G. Vassanji and Andrew Nikiforuk. And just like Rona said, my poster had a huge font on it. Whoa, must have been 24 point or something. Cool. Stood right out.
Rona’s my main booster. The lady standing and reading the notices was interested and Rona got right in there and told her all about me and my book. I stood there and blushed. “So you wrote that?” she asked. I admitted I did. “Oh, well I’m writing a book right now. Well, that is I have some ideas for one…”
I continue to be astounded by the numbers of people who have ideas for books.
Ran into an old library supervisor of mine at Safeway this morning. She hadn’t heard the news yet, so it was fun to fill her in. Yes, this is the kind of excitement my days are filled with.
However, things should become more exciting soon. Nick at Oberon tells me they hope to have me a book by Hallowe’en. Also the same day Mark Jarman reads from My White Planet. Sounds like an action-packed day.
I am totally blown away by Marina Endicott’s Good to a Fault. It’s one of those rare books you don’t want to put down, one that I find myself reading till way past bedtime. Compelling, believable and written in spare, elegant prose. Wow. Many times I’m not that impressed by big award nominations. I’ve read (or started to read) dull books that have won big prizes, and I’ve read wonderful books that were shunned by the award thing entirely. It really restores my faith to see such a good book being shortlisted for a big prize like the Giller, even if it is published by a small press.
Speaking of small press books, things seem to be falling into place for Love Minus Zero’s world tour. The bookstores concerned all have their orders in. I checked, after the Adrienne Gruber fiasco; her books didn’t make it to her reading in Calgary! I have wine glasses and napkins, hotel and air reservations all set. Now I just need some books. Last Friday Nick at Oberon told me they were “printing on the night shift in Toronto RIGHT NOW!” (I think he senses my anxiety), and that they should be shipping very soon. It’s hard at this point not to bug him several times a day. When are they shipping? Are they shipping now? Now? Now?
I was stunned to read of the death of Frankie Venom, lead singer of Teenage Head, at age 51 from throat cancer. I still have hearing damage from seeing them at the Stampeder Inn here in the town of cows in the early ’80s. They were probably the highest energy act I ever saw (well, maybe Iggy Pop gave them a run for their money) and they were working up to the very end. Wow. He’ll be missed, no question.
In happier news, my signed copy of Marina Endicott’s Giller short-listed novel Good to a Fault arrived here today. I had the good fortune to win it in a contest Freehand Books put on. Editor Melanie Little and her colleagues did an amazing job with their inaugural lineup –congratulations to all of you, and good luck with the Giller!
And in my own personal not-that-exciting news, I’ve begun rehearsing my reading for the Memorial Park Library launch on November 13th. I’m using the tiny hand held recorder that I bought this summer, and it’s quite helpful to go back and listen for mumbling, strange inflections, etc. Hope I can polish it up a bit before the big night.
Had coffee yesterday with a writer I met at the CAA conference in the summer. One of the many things we talked about was blogs. The thing about having a blog to do with your writing, we concluded, is that there generally aren’t that many exciting events going on, or ones that warrant blogging about, in my opinion. Thus it is here, I’m afraid. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to say something, it’s just what to say. Oh, that.
Okay, so tonight I’m going to the Betty Jane Hegerat / Adrienne Gruber reading at Pages. Adrienne Gruber is a poet who has a book out with Thistledown Press, so it should be an interesting mix. I’m also dressing in black, as today is Black for the Arts Day, apparently. I’m thinking, yeah, not a stretch for a lot of artsy types to wear black. Often do it anyway. Now, if they’d called it Ill-Fitting Cheap Sky Blue Sweater Vest for the Arts Day, that’d be something.
Latest on the book: I hear the covers are printed. The insides are printed. They just need to be glued together. I suppose they’ll be gluing them together soon, and then I guess I will see them. The little darlings.
Well, time to drag the dog to school to pick up the gentlemen. Happy Thanksgiving all.