Friday, March 17, 2006
They Like Me, They Really Like Me!
I just got my first review for Passion, Betrayal And Killer Highlights courtesy of Publisher’s Weekly and it’s pretty darned good! I hesitate to quote them quite yet since the issue won’t be officially out until next week and I don’t want to do anything to piss off the people who have taken the time to say such nice things about me so let’s just leave it at that: they said nice things about me!
Perhaps my excitement over this seems a little disproportionate seeing that this is just 1 review in 1 trade publication. After all, last year I hit the proverbial jackpot when my publicist extraordinaire, Susan Schwartzman, got me reviewed in Cosmo, Ebony, The Washington Post and a bunch of other fabulous publications and while not all the reviews were over-the-top-spectacular they were all what I would consider favorable. But two things make this review (and the impending reviews of at least three national publications that I’ll tell you about later) different:
1) This is my “sophomore” book
2) I now know how good I had it with Sex, Murder And A Double Latte
See, reviewers often don’t like an author’s second book. Think of it this way: say you want to go to the movies but the only film playing at a show-time that works for you is one that you know nothing about. You’ve never heard of the actors who star in it, the director is some kid who is new to Hollywood and if it’s been reviewed somewhere you haven’t seen it. You decide to go and surprise, surprise, it’s good! Now maybe you wouldn’t have liked it so much if you walked in with high expectations but that wasn’t the case. Then they come out with a sequel and you can’t wait to see it. You’ve been building this thing up in your head for months and you’re first in line at the theater and…it’s not as good as the first.
That’s not to say it’s bad, but it is a disappointment. Disappointment breeds resentment and resentment begets bad reviews. I’m not saying that the people at PW were waiting with baited breath to read my book but they did have certain expectations for it and I’m so thrilled that I was able to meet them.
Of course that’s just my theory. It’s entirely possible that I’m totally wrong and the reason that reviewers like to dis authors’ 2nd novels is because they’re bloodthirsty individuals who like to randomly dash people’s dreams; but somehow I don’t think so.
Okay, now for reason number two. As I’ve just explained, Sex, Murder And A Double Latte was my first book. I had no idea what I was doing when I wrote it and I had no idea what I was doing when I promoted it. Seriously, when I was in the middle of writing it I went to Borders to get a how-to-write-a-book book and found that there was a whole section for those suckers. My first thought? “Oh, I guess lots of people want to be authors, who would have thunk it?” That's how clueless I was. I have since discovered that 95% of the world wants to be authors. From minimum wage cashiers all the way up to highly paid lawyers, they all have a book idea. Many of them have explained to me that deep down they "really are writers at heart" which is all well and good. I am the first to acknowledge that many writers who are more talented than I am never get publish (another thing I didn’t know when I started this journey). But I do think that in order for someone to be a writer they have to…you know…write something! You’d be amazed by the number of “authors” who fail to grasp this concept.
But I digress. My point is that when I found out that PW was going to review Sex, Murder And A Double Latte I didn’t think much of it. I thought everyone was reviewed by PW. So not true. PW only reviews a handful of the God-only-knows-how-many books that are published each month. So just getting in there is an achievement. But the thing about PW is that getting in doesn’t mean that they’re going to be nice.
Well I got in and they were very nice to me so happy dance all around. And of course I’m delighted that the national magazines have expressed an interest! If it’s hard to get into a publishing trade magazine that dedicates several pages to book reviews each week it’s practically impossible to get into a fashion/lifestyle magazine that dedicates half a page a month to book reviews.
Plus I have fans now, honest to goodness fans! My publisher tells me that there have been people emailing them, demanding to know when and where I’ll be touring (a question I should have an answer to by the end of the month). And then there are all of you blog readers: my cheerleaders and confidants that I have come to love so very much!
What can I say? Life is good!
Sex, Murder And A Double Latte IN STORES NOW!!!
Preorder Passion,Betrayal And Killer Highlights In Stores May 2006!
For The Love Of A Dog--A fun online read