Thursday, November 04, 2010

The TNRD Library Tour

I should be writing words towards my goal of having 50,000 words total by the end of November, but it occurred to me that I haven't blogged—on this blog anyway—for like a month.

Hi. How are you? I didn't spell check this entry, btw.

In October, I did four author events and each one was successful in its own way and all of them had different crowds and atmospheres to the events. I'm noticing, regardless of this, I tend to say variations of the same things. And when in doubt, I quote Neil Gaiman. Not because I can't come up with my own replies, but he usually says what I mean in a way that's easier to remember when I've got 20 to 100 eyeballs on me.

The first event was a joint one with two high schools and about 50 students who didn't read or write. At least, most of them told me they didn't. There was also a pair of them asleep during my reading. You could say it was a tough crowd. But the great thing about starting like that is all other events seem to go better, because no one is sleeping during the reading. Or at least they aren't so obvious about the sleeping. I mean, someone could have been sleeping. I wasn't really paying attention because I was reading.

The second event featured all my friends from the North Shore and a stranger. We sat in a circle by these indoor streetlamps that I later declared were fixatures—which is a real word that refers to the special kind of light fixtures that mark hidden doorways—and talked about NaNoWriMo and Doctor Who and I had to defend my position on not-watching Firefly. I read the first chapter from The (damn) Magpie Book. It was at the end of the event, and the librarians were trying to make us leave so they keep flicking the lights during the reading, and when the lights came back on the streetlamps would flare. This was atmospheric and it helped to give my friend Tegan nightmares. (It's a very special honor to be on the list of people who have given Tegan nightmares with Neil Gaiman, Melissa Marr, Rachel Vincent and Big Bird.) The chapter was enjoyed by all and Sarah got to ask one of her signature Very Important Detail Questions.

The third event featured... um, I don't know how to put this politely. A lot of old people. The event was featured as part of the author speaking events for Canadian Libraries month. The week before Nalo Hopkinson had been at the library. Yeah, Canada Reads Nominee Nalo H. Then me. We go for variety in Kamloops.

Anyway, I was really glad I hadn't brought anything with profanity in it to read. Instead I read my favorite part of TALE that stands alone and that set the stage for talking about living in Japan. Also, I tried to babble my way through some questions about research and folklore. The excerpt I read was compared to Memories of A Geisha and someone told me later it also reminded them of Charles De Lint.  EPIC WIN. I was a little uncomfortable at this event, not because it was old people, but because they had me sit on like a makeshift dais and a chair. I kept feeling like I should say to people "Yes, you may approach the throne. What tributes have you brought the Tribe of Judgment?"

But I didn't, because as much as Sarah would have laughed, I think I would have lost the rest of the crowd. We did, however, stay until they closed the library which implies I have a habit of closing libraries and I should probably go to a support group for my loitering problem. (We went to Tim Hortons afterward and loitered some more.)

The last event was nestled in a cozy reading room of a library with a class of grade eight students, who came with questions and I finally got asked where I get my ideas from. (I don't think it counted when Sarah asked and I was like "Uh, I steal them from Doctor Who.") Then they asked who my biggest writing inspiration was and almost said "Neil Himself" until I remembered I wasn't on twitter and I should use his real name.

Some other stuff happened, and I was pretty much exhausted by Halloween. I didn't write a whole lot. Thus the goal to reach 50,000 words by the end of November. (I have 15,XXX right now.)


Rachel Vincent said...

You crack me up. Also, you're still rockin' the NaNo. I wouldn't worry. ;)

Leslie said...

Great post! It's as though I were there... And seriously, Charles De Lint?!?! That's awesome!

I wouldn't take the sleeping teenagers personally. They're up all night being too cool, and probably would have enjoyed it in spite of their coolness had they been awake. In fact, they probably were awake and enjoying it in spite of their coolness, and working very hard to hide it. They all say they don't read too, which is why I'm going to have to become a hermit around the time they start voting.

Rachel V. Olivier said...

That's fantastic that you got compared to Charles DeLint!