This week’s theme here at The Debutante Ball is guilty pleasures. I was going to write a post about certain foods I love, which probably aren’t good for me, and certain books I love that probably aren’t in the running for Pulitzers any time soon. But then I thought I’d rather break ranks and talk about a real pleasure: my launch party that was just this past Saturday.
Because, let’s face it: it was amazing and deserves its own post.
The party was held at Bryan Prince Bookseller in the little hamlet of Westdale Village, which is a charming neighbourhood in my city—the neighbourhood I grew up in and still live in today. I really wanted to have my launch close to home, and to be able to feature this wonderful little bookstore was one of the great parts of my launch. I had several people come up to me to say they’d never been in the store, but were taken by its charm and very friendly staff. Kerry, Nancy, Andrew, Frank and the rest of the staff did a great job to make me feel welcome and part of their team, if just for the day!
We made sure there were lots of cupcakes available for those who attended and I even managed to have a couple (if you can’t tell from the photo, these are minis, so when I said I had a couple, I wasn’t being a total glutton). These wonderful bites of awesome came from The Cupcake Diner, a wonderful little shop in Hamilton’s historic Farmer’s Market. And for those of you following along, there were Red Velvet, Raspberry Cheesecake, Salted Caramel, After Eight and some other flavors that I didn’t sample. Anyway, the consensus was that they were all delicious.
So people started arriving just before 1pm and it looked like it was going to get busy, so I started signing books for the early arrivals. It was so great seeing so many friends, family members, co-workers and blogger friends coming out! I realized my signing line was getting very long and I still wanted to thank everyone and do a short reading, so I stopped signing and after a short intro by Kerry, co-owner of the store, I got up to the podium*.
I’m not going to pretend I wasn’t nervous, because I was. REALLY nervous. But when I looked up and saw all those really friendly and happy faces waiting for me, I knew I could do it and probably without fainting. I thanked everyone for being there and also my helpers and the bookstore and then I read a short excerpt, one that I knew would be a great introduction to Lilah’s story. I even managed to get a couple of laughs, which, for me, is the highest praise! Then I answered some really smart and thoughtful questions from the audience.
Then, it was back to greeting friends, old and new, and signing more books. Could there be any better way to spend a day? I don’t think so. I don’t remember having that much fun since my wedding, but this time, I wore comfy Capri pants and put a teal streak in my hair. Though, like my wedding day, it was a dream come true.
Thank you to all who celebrated with me, both in person and virtually—I feel so very honored to have been able to share this special event with so many wonderful people.
Now, because my launch was such a great opportunity to rekindle my love for my favorite local bookstore and I’m feeling a bit warm and fuzzy about it, I’d like to hear about yours. Where do you love buying your books and what makes it such a special place for you?
*Speaking of podiums, if you read my New Years Resolution post, you may remember that NAKED AT THE PODIUM was one of my to-be-read books and yes, I did read it in the past few weeks and it proved to be an EXCELLENT resource. I highly recommend it to fellow writers to prepare them for public speaking and for getting ready for bookish events—lots of great info in there. Thanks to Lisa McMann for suggesting it to me way back when.