Tuesday, August 29, 2006
The Care and Feeding of Editors (and an Agent)--Part 2
Agent, who had flown in late the previous night and stayed in a Spokane hotel, was scheduled to arrive at 9 a.m., when meetings were supposed to start for the day. Keep in mind the Editors created this meeting schedule, complete with topics to cover and how much time spent on each.
9 a.m. Agent had arrived. (Note—no problem following the detailed directions to the house—without a navigator. I chose not to point this out to Editors.) Agent was sitting on back deck with Editors, chatting and gazing at the lake. Editors had experienced a slow rev-up that morning and had not yet eaten. Therefore, meetings could not possibly begin. Agent, self-contained that he is, said he was not a breakfast eater.
8. Repeat #5—Always feed your editors well. A full editor is a happy editor.
10 a.m. We ate breakfast at the outside table. (Agent couldn’t resist the fresh blueberries, and indulged.) No more bear sightings.
11 a.m. We were finally done eating, with computers and writing materials gathered, and ready to start our "9 a.m." meeting.
9. Allow editors to plan detailed meeting agendas. This makes them feel organized. Just don’t expect said agendas to be followed in any form.
We discussed issues for an hour or two. Agent still looked alert at this point. Editors were getting a little slumpy. Hubby brought out guacamole dip and chips. Editors perked right up.
10. Repeat #s 5 and 8.
We were supposed to be done with meetings around 1:00, having covered four to five agenda items. We finally finished at 4:00—only because we had to get ready for the launch party. We’d covered two major agenda items.
11. Repeat #9.
We dressed for the party and drove into town. The Simple Pleasures store looked great, with a huge display (including a three-by-four-foot poster of the book cover in its window), balloons in various colors of violet and purple, a beautifully decorated table for signing, etc. Marilyn Cooper, owner of the store, is a terrific decorator.
We had a good crowd, some people who knew me, many who didn’t. The Spirit Lake Chief of Police came—he’s been my wonderful helper for law enforcement issues in the Kanner Lake books. A town mayor showed up, as well as a newspaper reporter, a man who took many photos, and all manner of denizens and assorted folk.
Before the signing, I gave a short presentation. Introduced the VIPs in the crowd. Went to intro the Editors—and froze on E2’s last name. Totally gone from the ol’ pea brain. All I could think was—“Is that a dog?” Nothing to do but introduce E2 by first name only. Feeling like a real hack. Miss Manners would have my head.
Then--on to intro E1, whose last name I well knew. But how could I use it, when I hadn’t used E2’s? What inequity that would be. And let’s not forget E1 already had the lake view room. Imagine the enormous imbalance I was about to create.
I introduced E1 by first name only.
12. Always, always remember your editors’ names. Especially when they’ve flown across the country to attend your launch party.
After my presentation, the signing began. Numerous attendees bought multiple copies of Violet Dawn. And we got good photos and fodder for follow-up press releases. All in all, the party was successful and beautifully done (thanks to Marilyn). Well, beautifully done except for my intro faux pas. Editors—who were gracious enough to overlook my intro idiocy—and agent were highly pleased.
13. Make sure your launch party is successful enough to avoid embarrassment for Editors and Agent. Especially when they’ve flown across the country to attend.
By the way, the catered refreshments were great. E1 and E2 agreed that the thin, crisp-chewy chocolate chip cookies were to die for.
14. Repeat #s 5, 8, and 10.
Next up—Sunday. Our play day. Yeehaw!
15. Take Editors and Agent on an Adventure.
Read Part 3