Photo taken by Scott from the window of our plane in Chicago
There are two golden rules of the book tour:
- Eat whenever you can
- Pee whenever you can.
That is all.
Now I’m being asked if formal shorts are okay. I love that you’re writing me for fashion advice! Yay! Cause I have the requisite strong opinions, but can you do a little research first? I’ve been over this one before.
Formal shorts are an abomination. They are worse even than footless tights.
You know what isn’t an abomination?
Awesome hand-made T-shirts like this one. I wish Scott had taken a photo of Liset’s face as well because she also had the coolest make up and hair, but he’s been scared off by all those schools that have no-photo policies.1 For the record: We always ask when we take photos and if it’s also okay to post them.
What other clothing are you guys loving right now? Share!
I saw a woman at Seattle airport who had gold strands woven into her hair and the whole thing was pulled up into the most amazing do. I wish I’d taken a photograph. She looked like a goddess. And her hair perfectly matched the rest of her outfit which was also black and gold. Hmmm, it prolly sounds a bit dire, but, trust me, she was turning heads in a really good way.
- Often for very good reasons. [↩]
Day 11 of the tour:
Tonight’s appearance at Books Inc (Opera Plaza) was fabulous. Lots of rabid, smart, enthusiastic Scott fans and passionate arguments about David/Zane. For the record I like Zane better than David but prefer Shay to either one of them.
The most wonderful part of the evening for me was meeting London, who’s a guy from Sacramento, who drove all the way to San Francisco (which is at least two hours!) to tell me how much he loves my books. Isn’t that awesome? Also turns out he’s a Sacramento Monarchs fan and has even met their big star Yolanda Griffiths. I was deeply impressed and we got to talk women’s hoops which always makes me happy.
Equally happy making was the lovely Liset who gave me a beautiful piece of fan art:
What a wonderful day. Thanks to Jennifer and Shannon for all your hard work. You guys are deeply splendiferous!
There’s lots more to say. And a tonne of your comments I want to respond to, but I’m completely knackered.
Tomorrow there are more events. Also we fly to Seattle.
One of the fabulous things about this tour is seeing how popular so many of my friends are.
At a book shop on the outskirts of Chicago I saw this:
I pointed it out to Scott. “Look! Someone here loves Cassie’s book. And they have a tonne of copies!” (There were more in piles above and below this book shelf.)
The bookseller who wrote that shelf talker overheard me:
“You know Cassie Clare?! Oh. My. God. I LOVED that book so much!!! She is a genius! I have loved her ever since I read her Secret Diaries!”
At a school in Walnut Creek, California lots of the kids had painted posters of their favourite books. The room was full of them:
I checked each one, looking for a book by one of my friends, and lo and behold what did I find?
Maureen Johnson’s Thirteen Little Blue Envelopes.
During tonight’s fabulous event at Copperfield books in Petaluma praise was heaped on Holly Black, Libba Bray, Cecil Castellucci, Cassie, Maureen, and Garth Nix. It was joyous to hear. And, yes, I was bad, I boasted about knowing them all!
Book tours are fun!
You have a one-day turn around on getting your clothes laundered. If you drop it off in the morning it has to be ready in the evening or you’re wearing dirties to a gig. One hotel forgot to return the dry cleaning. And we stupidly didn’t check till it was too late leaving Scott struggling to put a clean ensemble together. Aaargh!! (Fortunately the dry cleaning was returned before we left that hotel.)
There’s such a narrow margin of error for clothes because we’re travelling with only carry-ons to eliminate the risk of checked luggage going missing. (It’s happened to us three times in the last two years.) Two carry-on bags and two computer bags cannot fit all the clothes you need for three weeks.
Or enough books either. (Our huge swag of books from the trade show has long been posted home.) So the horror of running out of reading before you get to the next book shop is always around the corner. I have many podcasts and vid on standby should it come to that.
Not that there’s much time for reading or catching up with people’s blogs or the news or anything. Scott’s usually on the road to his next gig by 7AM and back in time for a short nap before the evening book signing. Nights off are a blessing spent catching up on everything that has piled up. We have no idea what’s going on in the real world. But we know TONNES of publishing gossip.
We keep meeting the most wonderful people. The escorts have been charming and fun, the booksellers and fans ditto. Yet, we’re meeting so many people that the names of all these folks we’ve just bonded with have left our heads by the next gig. I hear there are new drugs on the market that help with memory. I am SO. VERY. TEMPTED.
Meeting the fans is the very best part. I knew there were a lot of people who were enthusiastic about Scott’s books but I had no idea there were this many. And they’re all so smart and funny and keep giving him the most fabulous home-made pressies. It makes me all teary and so very happy.
Thanks for coming out and saying hi!
Today has not been one of my better efforts. Let’s see:
- I almost broke one of Scott’s toes,
Put the “signed by” sticker on several of his books upside down (worst jacket monkey ever),
Left my bag with our passports in it behind at a restaurant and then managed not to hear the poor waiter sprinting after me and shouting with said bag in hands (but we got the bag back! yay most excellent waiter!),
Fell asleep in the middle of Scott reading me this thingie he’s working on. (He is a most excellent reader. I have never fallen asleep while he was reading before. I plead exhaustion.)
Where is the rewind button? I would like to start over please.
Here’s hoping the actual Sunday goes much better especially as there’s a chance I might get to meet Alice Walker. I loved The Color Purple so much when I first read it that I immediately read it a second time. I can’t remember how many times I’ve read it since then. She is a genius. I love her essays every bit as much as her fiction.
Oh, and if you’re in the San Francisco area Scott is doing a whole bunch of appearances. I’ll be at all of them, most especially the one we’re doing together:
Tuesday, Oct 9
601 Van Ness Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94102
In-store reading & signing with Scott.
A Not Your Mother’s Book Club event
I’m very happy to sign my books for you even at one of Scott’s events. I promise that I will try my best not to break any of your toes.
At the book shop appearances Scott keeps being offered a free book as a reward for his hard work and charming-ness. We keep choosing mass market paperbacks because we’re travelling and running out of spaces. Last choice: the latest Naomi Novik. (I started it last night and it rocks.)
If you were asked to choose one book from your favourite book shop what would it be?
Last night we went to Anderson’s books in Naperville, Illinois. Much fun was had. Scott explained the origins of the Uglies series and of Extras. The first is all about our society’s beauty obsession; the second deals with the fame thing. There was lots of Q & A. The questions were ridiculously smart and interesting and there didn’t seem to be a single person who hadn’t read at least three or four of Scott’s books so he didn’t have to worry too much about spoilers.
During the hours and hours that he was signing for the smart and very appreciative crowd I got to hang out with some fabulous folk who were readers of my books and/or blog. At least three librarians came up to tell me how much they and their patrons enjoy my books. Yes!
I had a blast gossiping about favourite books, which is, naturally, my favourite topic of conversation ever. I was totally stoked to discover that my raving about the genius of Megan Whalen Turner’s Attolia trilogy had influenced some people to pick the books up and read them. Yay!1 Also I found someone who loved Meredith Anne Pierce as much as I do!2 Double yay!
The photo is of Jez and her friends (whose names I’ve forgotten—sorry!) Thanks so much for all the manga recommendations. You guys are fabulous.
I wish I could remember everyone’s name. The folks I talked to were all so wonderful, but the only people I got a chance to say goodbye to were Jez and her friends. Sorry about that! Was wonderful meeting you all.
The tour has been brilliant thus far. I’ve met many fabulous booksellers, authors, and sales reps—hey, Michelle & Anne!—and generally had a grand time. Running into John Scalzi & Liz Gilbert was a definite highlight. Liz is in Chicago too. Right now she’s at Oprah’s studios. That’s right, she’ll be on Oprah on Friday! Liz is one of my favourite people in the universe so if you get a chance do watch her on Friday’s Oprah. The whole hour is devoted to Liz. How incredible is that?
In addition to hanging out with book people and gossiping I’ve also snaffled up some pretty awesome freebie books, including the latest Easy Rawlins by Walter Mosley, Blonde Faith. So far I loves it:
“What are you reading?” I asked.
“Catcher in the Rye,” she said, a little frown on the corner of her pillow lips.
“You don’t like it?”
“It’s okay. I mean it’s good. But I just think about a little black child or Mexican kid readin’ this in school. They look at Caufield’s life an’ think, ‘Damn, this kid got it good. What’s he so upset about?'”
“Yeah,” I said. “So much we know that they ever even think about and so much they think about without a thought about us.”
I didn’t have to tell Gara who they and us were. We lived in a they-and-us world while they lived, for all appearances, alone.
And now I have some writing of my own to do. Here’s hoping it will be half as good as what Mosley writes.
I am a jacket monkey which totally works for me as those are two of my favourite things. I love beautiful jackets and I love monkeys. What could be better than putting them together? (If I weren’t pressed for time there would a picture of a monkey wearing a jacket here. You’ll just have to imagine it.)
Today me and Nicola from Nicola’s books in Ann Arbor opened many many copies of Extras to the signing page for Scott to scribble all over. We were his jacket monkeys. I want a Jacket Monkey t-shirt. I’ve already earned it. So many copies! So many jackets! So many pages!
In other news I am regretting that I learned on an earlier trip never to travel with manga because just before we left I read the first two volumes of Naruto and Hana-Kimi and R.O.D. and I am desperate to read more. Sadly it only takes half an hour to read one manga. To meet my reading needs on this trip I would need a truckload. They’re heavy. No more manga for almost three weeks. Waaaah!!!
Turns out that two of our writer friends are here: John Scalzi and Elizabeth Gilbert. Yay! The first we learned when Scalzi tackled Scott in the middle of a cocktail party. We authors are so well behaved . . .
It’s 12:20AM in Chicago. But that’s really 1:20AM in NYC. And past my bedtime on account of waking up before the sun rose. Erk!
I sleep now.
Not my tour but Scott’s tour for his latest book Extras. It pubs on the 2nd of October and is deeply awesome. In fact, it’s my favouritest of the Uglies series. Aya is my new hero.
I’ll be along at most of the public events. If you’re around come and say hello.
I plan to keep blogging everyday. You know, on account of I’m addicted. I managed it every day we were away at Dragoncon so I don’t see how a little tour will stop me.
Hey, does anyone who’s been on a book tour before have any survival tips? (Other than bring lots of shoes?)
Update: I’d be delighted to sign books. I may have to skip a few of the events to get some work done but I plan to be at most of them.