Wednesday, March 19, 2008

All Superfluous Reading on Hold!

Stop the presses! Please don't recommend one more great book. It's finally happened. Today I received in the mail my very first galley from Library Journal. I'm simply beside myself with excitement and trepidation. I have 2, count 'em, two weeks to read and review this 400 page book. Since I generally average 3 or 4 pages a night before the book falls on my head, this should be quite an endeavor! I don't think I'm allowed to tell you all much about the title or story until (and if) the review is published. Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, I can talk about the 9th annual Southwest Florida Reading Festival that went off without a hitch this past weekend. We are really getting good at this! The Royal Palm Yacht Club was the place to be on Friday evening as authors and guests turned out for a sit-down dinner and a chance to hear Stuart Woods accept the library's Lifetime Achievement Award. Though not a great socializer, he was gracious and I surmise, a bit surprised at the first class organizational skills that went into the weekend. As always, our library director was in charge of the weather and it was exceptional.

My venue this year was the VIP food area where the authors could hide out between presentations, wind down, look at their speeches and mingle with other like minds. We served box luncheons to some delightful and unassuming writers including Susan Vreeland, Irene Smalls, Joe Hill (extremely popular and charming son of Stephen and Tabitha King), Marianne Berkes, Martha Tod Dudman, and Wendy Corsi Staub whose big Italian family was in tow and planning a trip to Sanibel.
Carla Neggers chatted with one of my volunteers at length, then went to Books a Million, purchased one of her own books, autographed it and brought it back for Joyce who was absolutely blown away. Stand up comedienne Alison Larkin had us laughing Friday night and she didn't slow down on Saturday. Bob Morris, Tim Dorsey and James Born should take their act on the road as well. They're always there for us and so generous with their time.
Maryellen and I popped over to H2 at the end of the day for our annual hash over (accompanied by wine and cosmos) of how things went and we're already full of ideas for next year. Jess has a list of our top ten author wish list and she and Carrie will be sending invites before you know it. If anyone knows how to circumvent Carl Hiaasen's publicist would you let us know!

I finished Exit Ghost, a most devastating novel. I've written enough for today but I must come back to Philip Roth another day. A writer that powerful deserves quality time.

1 comment:

Lesa said...

I caught that. You and Maryellen are full of ideas for next year. I thought you were done!

And, out of curiosity, who is on your top ten list of authors?

Congratulations on another successful Reading Festival!