The Other Night at Elliott Bay
The book tour for Conservatize Me pretty much wrapped up on 12/12 at the Elliott Bay Book Company in downtown Seattle (well, Pioneer Square, which is quasi-downtown). It was a wonderful way to wrap things up, at least mostly, at least until the paperback, with a couple of small exceptions.
Matthew Baldwin led off the evening reading things from the estimable Defective Yeti blog he maintains. It's unorthodox for readings to have an opening act but I asked him to read for two reasons: 1) he's oh so funny and should receive a much bigger audience and b of all, it made the event feel more festive, like a celebration of words and jokes and things like that.
I read mostly the same passages I usually do but the crowd, quite enormous (I mean in numbers, they weren't obese), was vocal and happy and energizing. Best of all, for me anyway, was the appearance of my family. Jill and the kids sat in the back row and except for occasional bouts of wiggliness, listened. When I opened the floor to questions, Charlie had the first one. It was funny because readers of my work know that he's kind of my muse and a hush went over the room when he spoke. Afterwards, with no real provocation to do so, he walked to the front of the room and took a bow. Later, he signed some books. I would do my studied, rehearsed author signature with a black Sharpie (fine point) and he would follow with a huge CHARLIE in purple marker. I felt like I was doing a joint appearance with a Star Wars obsessed 6-year-old J.D. Salinger.