Friday, February 25, 2011

Random Thoughts on a Friday

1. Sometimes having a migraine is good for you. In my case, I had a massive headache yesterday and when I lay down to rest a bit, I got the most brilliant idea for a new story! A day later, the idea is still a good one so I know it will “take.”

2. Sometimes letting go of your ego is good for your work. Since my last book was published three years ago, I’ve written five complete manuscripts, two of which have gone out on submission and failed to spark enough interest to be purchased. My pride was bruised, admittedly, and I only wanted a third book published. But now I want an awesome book published, not just good but great. I want to break out and be noticed, not merely “acquired.” Therefore I will not rush this book to my agent but take the time to craft it and if she thinks it needs more work, then I will do that.

3. Sometimes putting cocoa powder in the mix is good for your muffins. While baking banana nut muffins for a co-worker (and Mo), I added several tablespoons of cocoa powder (the unsweetened kind not hot chocolate mix) and they turned out yummier than ever! This happens to be fantastic recipe that I got from Saffron Hut's blog. Here's the link so you can make them yourself. Don’t forget to add cocoa! And be generous with the nuts.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Borders bookstores closing

News of Borders filing for Chapter 11 is nothing surprising to the publishing industry now but 3 years ago when my books were coming out, there was not an inkling of trouble with the company.

Borders in Westwood (near UCLA) was the first store where I signed stock of LOVE, MEG. I was so nervous and excited to see my books on the shelf! Mo and I searched on-line first to see where the books were around here and then we set out with pen and camera in hand. The very first time it took me forever just to get up the nerve to talk to a manager and say, "Hey, those are my books, do you want me to sign them?" I think we walked around the store for about half an hour first! But they were so nice and eager to slap the "Autographed copy" stickers on them. It was a huge thrill for me.

I always had a soft spot for Borders over Barnes & Noble for the simple fact that they stocked my books in more of their stores than B&N did. Also, they hosted a really nice signing for me at their West Hartford store when ALL ABOUT VEE came out. The manager, David, was amazing and kind and did everything he could to make it a success. When we ran out of books, he promised to order more that I could come in and sign before I left for the west coast - and he did!

Borders was also a better place to strike up conversations with other customers. For some reason, the stores I went to attracted readers who liked to talk about their favorite books. B&N customers were more business-like - either in and out with their purchases or hanging out with a coffee and earbuds in.

I'll miss Borders and I'll miss their managers. I hope the ones I met on both coasts fare well in this business, regardless of where they decide to stay.