Over 45, 000 bookish people and at least 25,000 librarians all in one place. Yep. That was the ALA conference in LA this year. And I was there with The Peculiars. The marketing/promotional end of writing is like coming out of hibernation. I spend eons in my cave with my imaginary friends and then I’m out and about in the big world with very little time to write at all. Instead I’m meeting interesting real people like Nancy Pearl and Julia Chang of the NY Public Library. And getting to spend time with my publishing family from Abrams/Amulet, Howard Reeves and Susan Van Meter. I am reminded again that publishing a book is a collaborative effort starting with my small critique group and then growing with agents, editors, publicity teams, book sellers and readers. Each person brings something different to the story.
Dorthy Sayers, one of my favorite authors, describes how this collaboration is wider than we imagine. “Poets (writers) do not merely pass on the torch in a relay race; they toss the ball to one another, to and fro, across the centuries.” We are one part of a conversation that has been going on long before us and will continue after us. I’m grateful to take part.
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