Thank you to all of you who came out last night for the book launch. Margo's house was the perfect setting, and her Pinkalicious cupcakes absolutely delicious (www.pinkaliciouscupcakes.com). We completely forgot to mention that, for every $3 that went to Margo, $0.25 went to support Children of the Nations (www.cotni.org), a group that provides birthday parties for children in Africa. You weren't just enjoying a frivolous evening, you all, downing wine and cupcakes and buying some lady's beach read--you were changing the world! (Okay, I exaggerate, but I want you to know it wasn't all fun and games.)
I spent the day trying not to think about the launch, lest I get too anxious. After that SCBWI conference, I pictured something similar: me reading out my first chapter that suddenly seemed too long and dull, while everyone in the first few rows passed out from heat, wine, and the crushing weight of boredom. Like showing your newborn to people--no one is going to tell you flat-out that your baby is ugly, but you still want to know: are you secretly thinking my baby is ugly?
It reminded me of a scene at the tail end of MOURNING where Perry's musical has opened, and Cass asks him, "Did [the audience] applaud or storm out? Did they laugh and cry in the right places?" Last night's audience laughed and murmured sympathetically in the right places, and then even in some places I didn't expect. (Who knew "Clyde Hill" was such a punchline? When I told my husband, he said that that was a laugh of "surprise and recognition." Well, we desperate writers will take any laugh we can get.)
Thank you again. If you enjoy the book, tell a friend. If you hate it, please dash off any time you see me coming and then post a blistering 1-star review on Amazon.