Thursday, May 10, 2012

Book Tour Whirl

Photo by Vinnie Iuppa
I have been so busy with traveling and book tour that I've neglected my blog. I'm going to use this post to catch up with readers on where and what I've been doing after the launch of Every Last Secret and what's in store for the future. Then I'm returning to the previous format of a post on literary mystery novelists early in the week and one on books of interest by writers of color later in the week. It will be a couple of months before I have the time to resume my series on juggling book promotion and writing, though. Look for more posts on that in late June-early July.

This is a photo of the beautiful cake my oldest son gave me for Every Last Secret's launch. Moist chocolate cake inside and a most delicious icing, or so I've been told. I was busy and never got to taste it. But others said they really enjoyed it.

Photo by Valerie Bonham Moon
Early the next morning after my book launch, Ben and I took off by train for Malice Domestic 2012, a national mystery conference that takes place annually in the DC area. While there, I participated in the New Authors Breakfast and then moderated a panel called "Have Gun Will Travel: Mysteries Set Out West." In the weeks before the conference, I've introduced my blog readers to the fine writers on this panel, but here's a photo of all of us as the panel was taking place. This panel was a big hit with the audience laughing along with us as we played out a humorous give-and-take over the merits of the West as a setting for a book.

  On Sunday, it was my turn to be a panelist and hand the reins over to moderator Judy Hogan for "Well Schooled in Murder: Academic Mysteries." This was another well-attended panel with lots of audience participation. Judy did a fine job of moderating, and we panelists had a lot of back-and-forth over various aspects of universities and high schools as a setting for mysteries.

Later that afternoon, Ben and I took the Metro back to Washington's Union Station and entrained for Kansas City. Train travel is such a civilized way to go from place to place, especially now that air travel has become so frustrating, that I found myself wondering how we ever allowed ourselves to be convinced to give it up.

Once returned to Kansas City, I did two radio interviews and prepared for a very busy weekend. Last weekend, I first gave a talk and signed books at the Sisters in Crime meeting at I Love A Mystery Bookstore in Mission, KS.

Photo by Clarence Simmons
 We had a SRO crowd and it was great fun. Lots of interesting questions and feedback from the group assembled. We sold lots of books, and that made the I Love A Mystery staff as happy as it made me. 

Here are photos of the lovely display the I Love A Mystery staff arranged for this event 
Photo by Clarence Simmons
and of the crowd as Gwen Ervin, president of Border Crimes/ Sisters in Crime, introduced me.

On Sunday, I did a three-hour book signing at Books A Million in Kansas City, KS, and then rushed across the metro area for the launch of a wonderful anthology of poetry by three Puerto Rican poets who are mother, daughter, and granddaughter, Woven Voices: 3 Puertorriqueñas Look at Their American Lives (Scapegoat Press). I edited this book, weaving the three poetic voices into a conversation with one another, and it's been a private passion of mine for some time now. It was such a joy to see Gloria Vando and Anika Paris reading their own poems and those of Anita Velez-Mitchell, 96-year-old mother and grandmother at The Writers Place in Kansas City, Missouri.

Now, I'm off to get ready for another reception and book signing this evening at the Ruiz Library in Kansas City, MO. See my earlier post about this great event. 

Until next week, have a great time!

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