Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Felicity Pickle & The NYT!
Before I gush and get a little sappy about the amazing readers I met last week, I wanted to make extra-especially sure I shared this happy news:
A Snicker of Magic was reviewed in the New York Times last Sunday!!! And it's a lovely review.
Click here if you'd like to read Elisabeth Egan's thoughts on Felicity & Co (she called the story "whimsical and bewitching"!!!). I still can't believe it!
Dad and I went to Starbucks that morning so we could buy a hard copy. Here's a picture of him, proudly holding the issue, just before announcing to everyone within earshot that my book is reviewed in there:
He's the sweetest!
I don't write much in coffee shops anymore. I'm in a weird season where I like to write in the quiet, listening to nature-sounds (rain, in particular). I like space to talk to myself (or my dog) without people worrying that I'm a French Fry short of a Happy Meal. But I have written heaps in that particular Starbucks, and I have no doubt I spent some time in Midnight Gulch there. The barista working that day has been there as long as I've been going there. He's an older guy with a kind smile who always says, "Hello, sweetheart!" when I walk in the door. That morning, I pushed my paper across the counter, ordered my coffee, and whispered, "Guess what? My novel is reviewed in this issue."
He glanced up over his glasses. "Is that right?"
I shook my head excitedly. Cartoonishly.
"Then show me!" he grinned.
So I turned to the page, just to show him. But he twisted the paper around so he could actually read it. As the line grew steadily longer, he cleared his throat and read, quite loudly: "New Girl in Town..."
He beamed. He cheered. And then he wouldn't let us pay for my coffee.
The sun was sparkling that morning, and the world was barely awake. While we waited for our coffee, I held the paper close against my chest, like I could press all the words against me, and I looked at the corner seat where I used to write. And wonder. And hope. It all made me tear up a little bit.
Not every review is good.
Not every story becomes a book.
Most people only hear the Cinderella-part of a publication story; the part where you actually get to do the thing you dreamed about. They gloss over the years you spent writing and wondering and learning and waiting and hoping.
Sometimes, it takes a long time. All the time, it feels like a miracle. I'm totally aware that my book is a sweet, quiet book. That most people will never know about it. That I'm not a big deal. But everything about this matters so much to me. And as much time as I spend sinking in self-doubt, I think it's important to celebrate the sweet moments when they happen. I would be wackadoodle not to celebrate this. My. Word. I've imagined some wild things, but I don't know if I was ever brave enough to imagine some of the wonderful things that have happened.
Don't give up on the hoping and dreaming part, is all I'm saying. Find the perfect window seat, the one where rain smears against the glass and sends tear-shadows over your pages, and write your heart out.
I'm grateful and excited and still a little bit stunned. What a day.
Yes, yes, yes!