Friday, January 06, 2012


Yesterday was the Best Book Birthday ever with many well wishers on twitter and Facebook (thank you!) I woke up wanting to go to lunch to celebrate. I’m not a last minute sort of person so I had little hope of swinging a sudden lunch, but I called friend and fellow author JUSTINA CHEN and, wow! She was free!

We lunched the launch and talked all things writing over delicious Thai food and jasmine tea.

Over lunch Justina asked some interesting questions like, “What do you love most about the book?” I shared my favorite scenes. Then she asked, “What did you learn writing it?” Another good question and one most folks (other than fellow writers) often don’t ask.

My answer: Before this tale my books have highlighted ‘the lone hero’ facing the plot on his or her own.

This reflected how I’ve lived my life, always thinking I’ve had deal with things by myself. In the last few years, life’s surprising challenges have driven me to the point of having to ask for help – what a revelation it’s been. So in Dragonswood

when Tess escapes from the witch hunter and goes on the run, she’s not a lone heroine, she’s running with her friends Meg and Poppy. The three of them share the dangers, the hunger, and the need to find safe sanctuary. Of course they fight along the way and get in lots of trouble, but the key thing is, Tess is not alone.

We talked more about Justina's books

Walden Award Finalist. Best Book of the Year (Kirkus Reviews and Barnes + Noble)
*starred* reviews - Publishers Weekly,Kirkus,Booklist

Chatted about her novel Return to Me (A beautiful book I've had the privilege to read due out Jan 2013) and her work-in-progress. Justina was All Dragonswood, but I like to talk about Her work so we took turns :)

After lunch we popped over to Bellevue Barnes & Noble for a look-see.

“I don’t think they’ll have any Dragonswood copies in yet,” I said. Justina just smiled and headed for the information desk where she asked about Dragonswood. They produced a stack for me to sign. Very nice!

It was already a Perfect Book Birthday, but there was more. In the afternoon I headed for my favorite second hand store to find something for the book launch party. I already have my party dress and didn’t know what I was looking for, just something magical. What did I find? Shoes that match the dress – and not just any shoes – fairy slippers.

Then headed to the Asian Market for dinner supplies and found a particular party treat – seaweed.

Tess Meg and Poppy eat seaweed on their journey so the Dragonswood Party goers will have the chance to nibble some. I happen to love it!

Finally, the late afternoon light was golden on the trees as I drove home and the moon was out. It made me want to view the sky from Phantom Lake. My husband and I paddled out in our canoe among the birds.

Canada geese, and cormorants flew overhead. Little buffleheads skimmed across the water and we saw an eagle with its black wings and white tale spread as it soared over Phantom Lake.

Perfect end to a perfect Book Birthday.

To all you fellow authors out there, I highly recommend celebrating your Book Birthdays in some special way that’s just right for you and your book. If you do, or if you plan to for your next book – tell us how you’re going to celebrate.

P.S. One week left on the Teen Book Scene book tour. Full Tour Page

Warmest thanks to Kari for putting this 3 week blog tour together!

1 comment:

Sharron said...

Quick note. Happened to be in the library. Happened to go into the teen area. Happened to find Dragonswood.

Awesome! Just checked it out this afternoon and I finally put the book down at the beginning of Part Three. Will finish tomorrow. Great read. Love the characters, the settings, the lesser characters, the dragons...

My only wish - that I'd found Dragons Keep first. I'll check it out soon.

Mentioning this on my blog as your book caused me to not edit when I'd made that a goal!