New York—Good Morning, America
I can’t believe how stupid I am! I miss the perfect opportunity to talk about my characters. What do I do instead? Talk about how hard it was to write this book. Who cares? I forget everything I meant to say about the love affair at the center of the book, about the intensity of the friendship between Caitlin and Vix. I can see the look on the publicist’s face when I’m done. I don’t blame her. And...my pretty green jacket comes out looking gray!
On the positive side. I smiled a lot. That has to be good for something. Someone once told me no one remembers what you say on the tube anyway. They just remember they saw you. Oh, god...it’s so hard to go from the solitary world of writing to this public world of media and hype. Help!!!
Have to catch a plane to Miami in an hour. Weather isn’t good. Gray and possible thunderstorms. My phobia about thunderstorms kicks in. Which is worse...to fly through a thunderstorm or miss your chance to say something that will make people want to read your book on Good Morning, Am???
Miami—The Author Escort meets Vicki and me at the airport. I tell stories about hotel wakeup calls that never happen (knowing I have a 6:30 am pickup the next morning) and she pulls two small elegantly wrapped gift boxes out of her console. We open them to find traveling alarm clocks! “Now you won’t have to worry,” she says.
Books and Books, a fine, independent bookstore has arranged a talk and signing at a synogogue that night, sure that the small space in the store won’t hold the expected crowd. I almost faint when I see the space in the sanctuary. There are seats for over 1,000.
At 8 pm, when I am scheduled to begin, there are maybe thirty people and eight of them are friends and relatives. The owner of the bookstore is embarrassed and I am ready to flee! But the show must go on so we ask everyone to sit up front. They turn out to be such a warm and friendly group we make the best of it and have an intimate and lively Q and A. Philip Volkman’s parents Barry and Felicia are in the audience. I introduce them and explain that the character of Nathan in Summer Sisters, is based on Philip, as he was when I met him at a book signing in Yonkers, New York, years ago. I only hope they think I did a good job with Nathan.
Later I learn a radio station has been announcing the event for the following evening and I wonder if they’ll get an overflow crowd at Friday night services.