The “Bitter, Sweet” Book Launch

I awoke Sunday morning to the sound of more rain. It wasn’t yet daylight so I laid there in the dark thinking how the day was going to be miserable—- weather-wise, I mean. I ended up reminding myself that at least we weren’t experiencing a fluke snowstorm as we did some thirty odd years ago in October. Rain may be nasty and cold but it can’t stop a book launch. Right? By late morning the rain had stopped and the sun broke though. It was beautiful, such a treat to see the sun as we’ve been having a wet rainy October.

I’m sure I must live the best community in Nova Scotia with so many caring people who chipped in to make this day special for me. The community centre was decorated beautifully, the lunch that was served I’m sure was delicious even though I didn’t have the chance to find out. One thing I do know for sure, I have to be the luckiest author in the world.

People began to arrive early. The hall kept filling up. It was crazy and exciting and more than I ever could have hoped for. 155 people signed my guest book but I know at least 14 who didn’t and there were likely more. In the end we had a nice turn out of about 170 people (or more for the launch)….Did I say NICE? I meant STUPENDOUS!!!!!

My editor, Caitlin Drake, was there from Nimbus and said some pretty nice things although I’m not altogether sure what. My brain was pretty full and not everything was making sense all the time. I may have been floating at some point..Who knows?  A good friend introduced me, I said a few things and read for a bit and signed a LOT of books!

Okay… here’s the truly scary part. I’m not so great at talking off the top of my head without having something prepared but I knew I pretty much had to do it. I ‘m not sure if I thanked everyone that I planned to but it’s too late now to change it.. The weird part of it all was, when I read an excerpt from the book, I wasn’t the least bit nervous. Don’t ask me why. I’ve been nervous in front of much small crowds. I have never read in front of a group this large. Maybe there were a lot of good vibes in the room and that helped. I have no idea.

It didn’t take long to realize that there wouldn’t be enough books, not the way people were buying four and five copies at a time. The bookstore had brought a supply and so had the people from Nimbus. I was asked at some point it I had any extra copies at home. I did. My husband made a quick trip home for my twenty copies and they disappeared. The only thing I regret about the day was the fact that there were people who weren’t able to get a book and that was unfortunate.

I’m not so great about adding photos however, I do plan to post some if I can figure out how to do it (if not, my wonderful daughter will help out. Thanks Mel!!) For all those who attended the launch, who bought book or who helped out in any way, not just Sunday but for anyone who has offered me encouragement along the way, who took the time to write me little notes, (One dear lady sent me some pickles and jelly on the day of the launch)…if you are one of these people I thank you. Without family and friends and community all this would be meaningless. And so I am happy to say that my book launch was pretty darn near perfect!

Twas the Night before the Book launch

Okay, So I don’t mind admitting I was a bit cranky today for a host of different reasons which I’m not going into. To top it all off the weather was crappy again and I was suffering a sinus headache. (Wait a moment while I get out my violin)

The book launch is tomorrow and I’m not exactly sure how I’m supposed to feel since I have no idea of what to expect. I guess it’s just one of those things that you can’t really know ahead of time. Apparently there will be some folks there from Nimbus if they don’t get lost on their way out here…Hehehe I’m sending them into territory where they have never before been. Although I was told today that one of them apparently knows someone who has a cottage out here in East Dalhousie. Seems as though there’s always someone from the city who knows someone with a cottage out here. We have so many lakes in our area that really isn’t a surprise. SO, hopefully all will go well and no one will get lost on their way out here with books. Okay I won’t go though a list of scenarios here.

Of course everything will go well…

Today when I dropped into Coles in the mall I was pleased to see a healthy supply of “Bitter, Sweet” on the shelves. I looked in the local section for a bit until I finally found the spot. I think I gasped…Silly me! It just slipped out. I savoured the moment for a time before moving on.  I have a schedule for book signings in the area that I will post a bit later when it gets into November but it is also on the Nimbus site for anyone who is interested in looking.

I guess that’s it. I’m almost there. Just a few more hours to go.

Not Another Article….

Afraid so folks…

As promised I’m including the link for the Register story. I have to say I’m not positive if this will appear in the Kings County Register or the Kentville advertiser. I enjoyed the article and it certainly helped that she had read the book. I think that’s an added bonus for any author. Not all reporters have the time to do so. I fully understand that.

Just so you’re forewarned the photo is about as bad as I earlier predicted so no one has to try and make me feel good about it besides I’m sure by next week that snapshot will be forgotten. Nothing I can do about it now.Right?

http://www.novanewsnow.com/article-389473-Bitter-Sweet-close-to-home-for-Best.html

I just received a lovely email from a lady who wanted to wish me luck with the book launch and who wanted to tell me she had purchased three copies of “Bitter, Sweet” for Christmas presents. How nice of her to take the time to email! It really gave me a lift… I also received an email the other day from the editor of the literary magazine who published my very first short story about fifteen years ago. Penny had some very encouraging words for me and a bit of advise which was greatly appreciated. Everyone has been so supportive and wonderful I really couldn’t ask for anything more. So if you’re reading this and you’re one of those people you should know that all your kind words and thoughts mean so much to me.

How to Order in the US

I’ve had a few people from the US ask about ordering my book and since I wasn’t sure exactly how that would work I decided to contact Nimbus to find out. There are several different options for ordering from the US.

I’ve been told that Nimbus will ship to the US and that it will eventually be released in the US in spring 2010. I have the Nimbus link on my site for anyone wishing to go that route. Also the book can be purchased at Amazon.ca or Chapters. Ca or it can be ordered through the Woozles website http://www.woozles.com/

For anyone wondering what the heck Woozles is it’s the largest children’s bookstore on the east coast of Canada.

So, I ended up at The Inside Story in Greenwood today. I wanted to see if my book was on the shelf. I know, pretty pathetic… but I can’t help myself. Their site had mentioned that the book was in stock so I was curious. I was spiked with disappointment when I didn’t find it. I don’t know why. There are plenty of stores it won’t be in, that’s for sure. I guess it was because I knew they had ordered some in. So where the heck were they?

Before I left the mall my husband went into the store and asked for the book (I was too much of a chicken to do so— doubly pathetic. Right?) Of course it was there, I just didn’t know where to look. Relief!!!

So ….a bit later in the day my sister, who happens to live in the Annapolis Valley stopped into the same bookstore and asked if the book was in. The lady mentioned that she was the second person that day to come in and ask for the book… Hey, how impressive is that my sister thought? She went on to explain that her sister had written the book just before she whipped out her camera and took a photo of my book in the bookstore. Later, we shared a laugh when she found out that my husband was the other person who had inquired about the book today… How’s that for impressive? Hehehe.

The Big Interview

Well, maybe not so big but we had a nice long chat and the lady who interviewed me had actually read the book!!

Earlier today the editor from the Kings County Register came by to interview me. Since Dalhousie is actually in three different counties we usually get coverage from both Kings and Lunenburg which is great. The article will run next week before the launch. I’ll put a link up when it comes out. I really don’t like having my picture snapped because I take really bad photos but I guess it’s too late to feel self conscious about a silly old photo that will be forgotten next week. It’s like getting a bad hair cut…It’ll grow out in time.

This week the Bridgewater Bulletin ran a story about “Bitter, Sweet” I’ve included the link below in case anyone is interested in looking. As I was told the other day it’s all publicity for the book which is always a welcomed thing. I got away easy on the Bulletin article because the gentleman interviewed me over the phone.. No photos…Teehee.

http://southshorenow.ca/archives/2009/101309/arts/index002.php

I also have a whole stack of bookmarks that Nimbus sent me so if anyone in the area would like one or some just let me know I’ll make sure you get one.

Checking Out the Bookstores Because That’s What you Do..Right?

On my way into town on Saturday my daughter called to say she had overheard someone at work mentioning my book. She of course spoke up and said the person who wrote the book was her mom. Although the lady won’t be able to make it to the launch she would like an autographed copy. This prompted me to drop into the local bookstore to see it by chance they had any copies in yet. I immediately headed for the children’s book section and there they were— copies of “Bitter, Sweet” for everyone to see— oh, and buy too. (Mustn’t forget that buying part!) A pretty cool feeling I have to admit! I wasn’t sure if Nimbus had sent any copies out yet but I guess they don’t waste any time and since the folks at the bookstore know me they would have put them out as soon as they arrived.

I also checked the local Coles store and wasn’t at all surprised to see that they didn’t have any copies in yet although I’m sure they’ll eventually get around to it. Hey, they have to go some place. Right? And no, I’m not going to check out all the bookstores from here to BC but if you happen to catch sight of my book by all means let me know.

Sunday we celebrated Thanksgiving as my husband and I both had to work today. I gave copies of the book to two of my three children and mailed one to my oldest daughter who wasn’t able to make it down for the weekend. She won’t get it until later in the week since today was a holiday. I love being able to share this with them. I don’t think I mentioned that my complimentary copies also had a small stack of bookmarks enclosed. As silly as it sounds the bookmarks thrilled me almost (I did say almost) as much as the books. I made sure to give the kids each one as well.

Well I guess there’s no denying it now. I’ve finally have a book published. Do I feel any different? Happy, yes. Satisfied, yes. Thrilled in every way imaginable. But to tell the truth I’m no different now then I was before. Just me, take me or leave me. Having a book published really doesn’t change who you are, although I have to say that I’m totally in awe over the fact that someone (other than family) would want to read my book. How cool is that?

Upcoming Events

Today I received a list of dates Chapters sent my publisher for signings.  There are seven different Chapters and Coles store on the list. I’m giving this list some thought as I noticed for instance there’s a booking for Bridgewater and one for New Minas on the same day an hour and a half a part. I’m not even sure I can make it to New Minas from Bridgewater in just 90 minutes. And then of course one never knows what the roads will be like on that day as it is late in November.. I really wouldn’t want to show up late for a signing. I might see if they can change the time on that one by a half hour. It’s worth asking. I know I won’t be able to make it to all these signing dates but I’m going to do the best I can. I’ll be working too and this complicates matters as one of the signings is during the week. That’s one definitely off my list. I’m not sure if they will try to reschedule some of these or not. It is called an “author signing wish list” so we’ll see.

I’ve also been contacted by two local papers who want to do a story before the book launch. The next few months are going to be busy. And dare I say I received a parcel yesterday? I mean the parcel, the one I’ve been waiting for all this time. There were plenty of emotions going on as I struggled to open it. Boy do they tape those things up well. I was speechless, something that doesn’t happen often. What a feeling. I’ve looked at the cover countless times. It doesn’t change. A pretty sweet feeling!

So just in case anyone is wondering I’m holding out showing the book to anyone until the book launch so I guess everyone’s just going to have to wait until the 25th.

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