No surprise here: Everyone on my list is receiving books (again) this holiday. Thrillers, history, science fiction--every year it's wonderful to try and match people to books. I had a great time shopping at Book Passage (my local independent bookstore), perusing staff picks, holding the books, alighting on covers, reading the flap copy and the first sentences.
Books are the best gifts in so many ways. For one thing, many of us already have too much stuff to warrant all the spending that happens at this time of year. To me, though, books don't count as stuff. The best of them give us new insight into what it means to be human, are even transformative. And you don't need to keep the book--I love to think of each one passed on to a friend or given to a school, or shared in a Little Free Library.
If I could, I'd wrap up peace, love, and contentment. I'd give the bully and the bullied the gift of acceptance. And even though these things can't be delivered under a tree or tucked by the menorah, a book sometimes can inspire a better world. And money helps too.
Crowded hallways, subway cars, and airplanes. It's not very comfortable is it? I sometimes get that closed-in feeling, and the only solution is to hold very still, as if I am disappearing.
Some crowds are just too many people in a small space. Other crowds can feel bigger than they are, especially if they are menacing.
That's the way June feels when she finds herself in the middle of a hostile crowd outside the library.
Fortunately, the world of book publishing is the first kind of crowd--just too many books in a jammed freeway of information. How can MY MIXED-UP BERRY BLUE SUMMER stand out?
With help. Lately I've realized how wonderful the writing community is. Slowly, like a spring vine, I'm connecting with booksellers and authors, fans and friends on twitter and Facebook. Everyone has been so supportive!
The care I've taken with the words and story will show, I hope. The book is baked, and in one month it will be on the shelves, ready for young readers.
Thanksgiving is around the corner, and I bet everyone is telling you to be thankful for something. At my house, we're giving thanks for... pies!
Yes, this is the season when you can make pies with abandon. Chocolate-pecan, Apple-blackberry, cherry-pear, pumpkin whatever!
I'm looking forward to making pies with my daughters. But I'm also thankful for sales representatives. The good folks at Houghton Mifflin are traveling around to bookstores, talking about books and about My Mixed-Up Berry Blue Summer. And I'm grateful, I really am.
Here's what I've been thinking and writing about. I love getting email, too!