Thursday, September 12, 2013

Story of a Book Launch (featuring fun party pics)

The party sorta ended up spinning out of my control.

This has happened to me in the past when it comes to party-planning. I start with something smallish:

Hey! Let's have a book signing for my debut novel Thin Space at my favorite local bookstore and I'll invite my family and friends to celebrate and we'll have punch and cookies, and maybe the cookies will be shaped like bare feet.

But somehow it grew bigger:

Of course I wanted to invite my Bunco group because those ladies are so much fun, and all of my daughter's friends--my key demographic readers--and my Mom, (because she is my MOM!), and my in-laws must come because they are awesomely supportive and somehow giddier than I am about this whole publishing a book thing, and then, there are the teachers and librarians who've read the book and have been thrusting it into their students' hands and now I don't even think of them as teachers and librarians anymore, but good friends who go out for margaritas and chips and guacamole with me.

Also, my book club. And my neighbors. And my husband's coworkers. And my hair stylist.

Somewhere along the way the amazing next door neighbors, who throw THE most lavish parties on the block, took over. (She's a former caterer and gourmet cook. He's a former bartender. Enough said.) She planned a menu. He stocked a full bar.

My friend from college drove 12 hours from Minnesota. My long time friend and her daughter drove 12 hours from North Carolina. She'd made these gorgeous necklaces:

(Here's my Mom, modeling one)
And brought a stamp shaped like feet and proceeded to stamp the heck out of a bunch of stuff with it.

(A napkin)


I guess I should mention here that the main character in the book walks around barefoot. Also, the thin space, supposedly, is a misty and cold place. Which inspired my in-laws to buy blocks of dry ice and set them misting around the back porch:


We drove over to the bookstore and I was getting more and more nervous... especially when I walked in the door and this greeted me:


And I got even more nervous when I saw the crowd--a panorama of This Is Your Life Meets my Bunco Group and My Mother and including some people I did NOT know!!:

 
I took a deep breath and had a profound moment of gratitude and love for all the readers in the world and for bookstores and for dear friends and for my father-in-law clapping and wearing his book cover necklace with pride.

I talked for a bit about something--who knows what. I signed books and smelled the stunning flower arrangement that my best writing friend Donna sent.


I tried not to spell anyone's name wrong and somehow ended up spelling my OWN name wrong a few times. (It's the two l's and the e that trip me up. I just keep looping letters without paying attention.) After the signing, the bookstore owner invited me to sign the Wall of Authors and my daughter noticed that there was tiny space under John Green's signature so I squeezed my name in there, making sure I spelled it correctly.

The party went on late into the night. We stuffed ourselves on gourmet food and my bartender neighbor ran around filling drinks and popping champagne and making multiple toasts to perseverance and following dreams and Harry Potter-like success.

And then we all kicked off our shoes and enjoyed each other's company and the remainder of the lovely warm summer night.




22 comments:

  1. So happy for you. Can not wait to get ur book out here in PHX

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  2. What a lovely party! Congratulations!

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  3. I'm so happy for you! You deserved EVERY second!! :)

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    1. Thanks, Laura, and so glad you could be there.

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  4. Jody, reading this is pretty much the best time I've ever had attending a party I didn't actually get to attend. You're a launch-master goddess!

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    1. I like that, Kim. Launch Master Goddess. Of course it was really all of my awesome and creative family and friends who did all the work...

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  5. Still thinking we should have gotten the fog machine...
    Love you and loved your party!

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    1. Ah Deb. Yes, the fog machine. That would've been cool, I must admit. Thank you, sistah, for driving 12 hours and, well, for EVERYTHING. LOVE LOVE LOVE you.

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  6. Wish I was there, just for the dry ice

    -Ben

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    1. Oh Ben, I wish you were there too. The only sad note of the day. PS the dry ice was one of those cooler in theory than in reality types of things...

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  7. Awesome!!!
    It sounds like everything a launch party should be.
    And I can't get over those glittery foot cookies!

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    1. Thanks, Jenn. Yeah, those cookies... They tasted pretty darn good too. My neighbor is amazing.

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  8. The only thing better than margaritas and chips and guacamole is YOUR BOOK!!!! Thanks for the nod, and I can't even express how much I loved being a part of this event. It was, as you are, made of awesome.

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    1. Alison. YOU are the Made of Awesome one. Thank you for everything--including things in the future that I haven't even asked you for yet...

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  9. Bare feet cookies. What will they think of next???

    FYI - I'm reading Thin Space for the SECOND time. :-)

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    1. Good thing it is a fast read! (In all seriousness, thanks, Peggy)

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    2. I read it fast the first time for plot. The second time I will read for detail and to understand it better. It'll be on my desk a while.

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  10. So excited for you, Jody! The book is awesome. So are you and so was the release party at C2C! Happy travels!
    -Tracie

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    1. Thanks, Tracie! And so happy you and your daughter were there!

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  11. Congrats with your party! Loved your book SO much! Are those necklaces for sale????????? (=

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