Excitement (see: Anxiety) is mounting as publication creeps closer. Publication is a long process and it’s been a challenge for me to stay the course all these months. I’ve been busy submitting final pages to my publisher, securing author events for the fall, and writing pieces for online magazines and journals. Whew!
ARCs, or advanced copies, are here! It is definitely fun to hold a real book and smell a real book. But if I’m being honest, it also triggered terror. I know for many authors, holding those advanced copies is a Hallmark moment, but holding my book freaked me out. All of these years I spent writing a book hoping people will read it and now that the day that people will read it is slowly approaching I’m frightened that people might actually read it. (Also frightened that nobody will read it.)
I love that so many of you have already pre-ordered your copy. I really appreciate that support! You have propelled me to Amazon’s bizarrely specific category of “#1 New Release in Religious Fundamentalism” several times, which gives my title a pretty, ego-boosting orange banner. And yes, I know that some guy took a picture of his foot and became an Amazon bestseller because two of his friends downloaded it. (Seriously, read that piece. It’s hilarious and sheds light on what it takes to be a “bestselling author” on Amazon.) I also don’t plan to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes and call myself a “#1 Bestselling Author” like that one lady you went to college with when you know her book sold like 12 copies. Anyhow, I appreciate you guys for giving me that orange banner for 48 hours. That’s all I meant to say.
My launch party will be at Bella Viva Ristorante e Caffe in Gilroy on the evening of October 25, and I encourage you all to come out for that. It’s going to be a party! Of course, I’m going to be very pregnant by then (whoops), so I won’t get to indulge in any of those rich California reds. But I hope you do for me.
I’ll also be speaking at my hometown library–SHUDDER. By hometown, I don’t mean the town I live in, but the town I grew up in and the town the book takes place in. Seriously, I don’t know what drug I was on the day I signed up for this gig. I’m speaking in my hometown, population 1,000, about my very raw memoir of an abusive church located in said hometown…a church that a dozen dear family friends STILL ATTEND. But I felt it was an important place to appear and that it could be healing for me and maybe some of the people who also were harmed all those years ago. That’s the whole point of all this, right? So if you’re in the area, I’ll be at the Colfax Library, December 6. I’ll be doing some giveaways and other fun stuff so I don’t spend the whole evening in tears.
I’m booking other events, so if your local bookstore or library or church is interested in topics such as leaving fundamentalism, finding faith outside the margins, or just want to talk about stories and writing and books, I’m happy to make a visit.
If you are looking for more ways to help, I’d love to put you on my official launch team. Indie authors need all the help we can get to give our little books momentum. You can help by buying the book (of course), leaving reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, posting about it on social media, recommending it to your friends, ordering it from your local bookstores (yes, support your indie bookstore!), selecting it for your book club, or pretty much anything else you can think of. Seriously, all of it helps. You don’t have to be on my launch team to do any of this, but if you are interested in helping in a more official capacity, shoot me an email and I’ll get you on the list.
Oh, I will also be teaching some writing workshops at the Central Coast Writers Conference Sept. 27-29. I will be selling books at this conference but that is OFF THE RECORD because my book doesn’t officially launch until Oct. 16. I won’t be selling copies before Oct. 16 anywhere else so if you are dying for an early copy (LOL the ego of first-time authors), that’s the place to be. Also, it’s an affordable writers conference on the central coast with lodging on Morro Bay. And my face will be there, so how could it not be awesome?
Thanks for reading, loyal readers. Have a wonderful summer, and as Leah Remini says, don’t be culty.