Tick Tock
Hello, Amigos. I have been busy with Facebook and twitter lately, waiting for the code-writer genius cadre to tighten all the bolts on the new website. Man, it's pretty! I have been promising this for a while, but we're days away. All new, all colorful, all kinds of neat things to look at. And, after a while, we'll be adding the Teresita/Saint of Cabora page with photos and songs and archival stuff like death certificates and citizenship papers and the bibliography. Scholars and term paper writers can have a field day. I'm so happy--we have downloaded reams of my drawings, cartoons, illustrations and even some paintings. I will be doing "Sketchbook Satuirday"--new art every week in the blog section. Yes! Will bring back the old "Writing Church" sessions on Sundays--where I'll answer any writing questions you have. That's usually a lively convo.

I just returned from the BEA in NYC. (Book Expo America.) It was, as ever, a mad crush of a million book buyers, sellers, collectors, librarians, publishers, editors, publicists, costume-wearing characters, promoters, Twitterers, book-bloggers, reviewers, agents, freebie-hunters...oh, and writers. We were there, too. Lots and lots of writers. There was the occasional whiff of desperation, like a cheap cologne, in the air. You know: Amazon Publishing loomed in the corner like Darth Vader's Death Star! News of favorite bookstores dying seeped across the floor--our beloved Bookworks in Del Mar, for example. One dude told me my "legacy" publisher would be dead and gone in five years, and I'd better get to Kindling. Huh. Little, Brown? Gone? Ask Louisa May Alcott. They will prevail.

I was thrilled, and worn out, by the event. As usual. Big doses of coffee helped. I wa slucky enough to be around when L,B unleashed the ARCs (gorgeous) of QUEEN OF AMERICA. I stood with my editor, Geoff Shandler. He smiled and said, "Now you'll see what it's like to man a booth at BEA!" Well, it's interesting. Lots of people at first picked it up, looked at it, and dropped it. But then, suddenly, the lines formed and we burned through every single copy! Hundreds gone! I sweated through my jacket. Yes! My kind of work!

You can never tell if your book will do well or not. Many times, people asked me, "Does it stand alone, or do you have to read Hummingbird first?" So I can see that bit of info will be a big part of my task between now and December. Just to make sure people know it stands alone. HEY, PASS IT ON.

Happy to be home, and happy we went. Super excited that we discovered the best first book, ever: Eowyn Ivey's THE SNOW CHILD. Just wait. Seriously, just wait till you read this one. Neil Gaiman fans? You're going to be hooked. And she's the nicest person out there. Psst--don't tell Eowyn, but I'm grabbing an Alaska cruise so I can hang out some more!

OK. Watch this space. I'll let you know via FB and Twitter when this thang pops. Hope it knocks you out.

Love, L

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