Sunday, June 9th marked my very first book launch. With the wonderful help of family and friends, we gave DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT a great send-off into the world.
A few weeks before the launch, I’d gotten it into my head to give everyone a little swag bag as a thank you for taking time out of their busy schedules to join us for the launch. I decided on some tie-in items to go along with the book. Luckily, I have two beautiful daughters who helped me every step of the way (along with my husband, Sir-Not-Appearing-In-This-Picture).
My eldest, Jessica, is the artist behind the bookmarks—charcoal and burguny organza and satin ribbons with a skeleton key charm on one end and a skull on the other. This was part way through Jess making 150 bookmarks:
Jordan, my younger daughter, is my kitchen whiz, and she helped handcraft 450 white chocolate bones. This was the first batch coming out of the molds:
Yes, those long bones are femurs and they’re pretty darned anatomically correct!
150 bags, all stuffed and ready to be ribboned:
The final product:
The launch itself took place at our family church. In fact, if you look back at the post about my brother Mychael’s big post-Oscar event, you’ll see it’s in the same place.
This is Pat. Pat is awesome. When I wasn’t even sure that I was going to have a book launch, Pat stepped in and organized it for me. With the help of a large number of church members, they put on lunch for everyone that came. Since there were over 100 people there, this was no small feat, let me assure you.
Pat is also a bookseller and she’s passionate about her books. To introduce both myself and the book, she talked everyone into going to their local Chapters bookstore and to ask for me to do a signing there. Then she had the crowd start chanting the name of the book over and over again. It was very funny.
After Pat’s introduction, I got up to give a little background about my writing career to date—how I’d written as a pre-teen and then given it up for about 25 years before coming back to it. So much so, my interest in writing was a total surprise at the time to my husband of over 15 years… SURPRISE!
Then I read Chapter Six for the crowd as it’s one of the early turning points in the story. It was very well received.
Then the book signing began…
One of my favourite aspects of the day was seeing old friends, many of whom had traveled great distances to attend:
Cheryl, who is in the above picture in the right upper corner; a Twitter friend for a long time I've only known by her handle until a few weeks ago.
Amy, my coworker for 11 years, who sat by my side in the lab every morning and was always so sure I’d make it in publishing, even when I wasn’t.
Jane, the representative of my Internet moms group. We’ve been together since August of 1996, a group of gals all due to give birth in April of 1997. It’s an amazing story of friendship, but most of us are still together as an online group and we still share our ups and downs together. Jane brought with her some wonderful gifts from my very, very thoughtful friends.
It was also nice to meet new friends. Lloyd Kelly of Nelson Education, Five Star’s Canadian distributor, not only drove all the way out from Scarborough, but he brough boxes of extra books to make sure we had enough. He helped us get set up and then even contributed some of the pictures taken that day.
It was a busy, nerve wracking (public speaking and I are not comfortable with each other) but fun day. Thanks to all who came out and all who helped make the day a wonderful experience!