Can you believe it? I can’t; it’s been a hell of a week or so. First I was ill last week from the stress and all, which we’ll discuss more in a minute. Then just as I started to feel better I had to drive to Orlando to hang out at the RWA convention for a couple of days, which we will also discuss in a minute. I got so little sleep and drank so much vodka that I wasn’t sure I was going to make the drive home on Sunday (not because I was drunk, but because I was hungover and exhausted). But I did finally, and I’ve gotten a bit of sleep now, and that’s good.
However, I won’t be around much next week. On Friday we’re heading down to Miami to spend Birthday Week with my BFF. (It’s Birthday Week not because I think my birthday is so damn special it needs a whole week, but because it is in fact a week of birthdays; my Princess is the 8th, I’m the 11th, and BFF’s son is the 16th, although we’ll be back before then.) So I may show up to do my annual birthday Delurk post, but I may not, and really, you guys don’t care that much about that post, I don’t think. It doesn’t really entertain anyone but me.
But speaking of Delurking (for those who are new to the blog–and I know there’s a LOT of you–usually on my birthday I ask my blog lurkers to say hi, even if they never post another word), if you have recently sent me an email or Facebook message, or have joined the Downside Army, I *will* be replying. I just haven’t had a chance yet with all of the illness and travel and fun stuff like that.
Which brings me to the stress thing. Someone tweeted to me a link to their review of CITY OF GHOSTS last night and said something like “I’m sure it’s no surprise, I loved it.” Which is of course lovely to hear, but the thing is, it’s always a surprise. Always. I never expect people to like my work. I certainly don’t expect them to love it. I’ve been completely overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response the series has gotten, and by the emails and comments and messages and everything else. And I know I keep saying this, but I keep saying it because you guys keep talking about the books! It bowls me over every single goddamn time. Seriously.
Maybe I’m bizarre in that way, but I don’t think so. I don’t know any other writers who expect people to love their books. We love them, of course. We hope other people will. But it’s never expected.
Especially CITY OF GHOSTS, because by the time that one came out I’d seen how enthusiastic the response to the first two books was, and was literally terrified of letting you all down. And of course now I’m getting ready to start working on the 4th book later this month and that’s even scarier.
But. Let’s leave those dark and depressing topics and move on to some fun stuff, shall we? First, I am typing this post using my NEW NETBOOK! RED SHINY!
I do like it so far. I like writing on it quite a bit. It’s a wee slow for the internet, though, I will say. And despite the fact that I’ve never been one of those evangelical Mac people, I’ll admit it’s kind of a drag dealing with those constant fucking Microsoft updates it keeps trying to get me to do. I think at some point I’m going to scrap a bunch of the stock settings and install a different browser, and see how that goes. It’s a little weird to get used to the internet on the smeller screen, too. And of course there’s all that pain-in-the-ass stuff to do now, like finding all my bookmarked sites again and adding them on here and digging up passwords and getting those in here and that sort of thing, which I hate doing. (I met a guy once, just out of the Army, who was talking about starting a business helping people set up their computers and stuff. I would totally pay someone to do that. Just give it back to me when everything is exactly the way it was on my last computer, you know? Remember, Stacia Hates And Fears Change.) So there is that, but that’s not the fault or anything of the netbook itself, which I do like a lot so far.
And for writing, it’s seriously fun, and of course it’s pretty and light which made it perfect to take to Orlando with me.
Ah, Orlando. It was fun. I honestly have only vague memories of a lot of it, since I was so fucking exhausted the whole time I was drinking just to stay awake (and of course to enable me to speak without squeaking or panicking, since meeting people isn’t really usually comfortable for me and I get very nervous and scared). I only got like two hours of sleep Thursday night, so drove to Orlando already on a serious sleep deficit. But I got to meet up with Ann Aguirre and Shiloh Walker and a bunch of other people (including Leanna Renee Heiber at one point), which was an absolute riot. I remember taking pictures of our legs outside the hotel. I remember being forced to drink Scotch from a flask, and I dislike Scotch generally but didn’t really care. I remember discussing comic art with Miriam Kriss. I feel terrible that I can’t recall at the moment who I was hanging out with, but I don’t think that’s drunkenness, it’s that I’m A) not great with names; B) there were so many people sort of drifting in and out of our little crowd; and C) the aforementioned anxieties/phobias/whatevers that mean I’m sort of pretending not even to be myself when at these things, and so don’t really feel present for a lot of it.
Saturday morning I signed books for Ballantine, which was awesome. I was exhausted–having only gotten four hours of sleep or so–but it was so, so much fun, and my fifty copies of UNHOLY GHOSTS were gone within half an hour or so. AMAZING. (Of course, these were FREE BOOKS, as far as I know, so it’s not like it was me and my books so much as it was free books, I think.) But it was really fun, and really exciting, and I met some fantastic people and had a long lovely chat with them.
Then I worked a bit. I attempted at one point to nap but of course did not because A) I can never fall asleep during the day; and B) the people in one of the nearby rooms had this long loud fight. For like an hour. And at that point if I was going to get any sleep it would only have been an hour or so, which is of course useless as a nap. So I got up and wandered around, and started drinking to stay awake.
Had dinner with my editor, which was fantastic. met up with my original Del Rey editor, also fantastic. Hung out with Laura Bickle and Linda Robertson, two fellow Juno/Pocket authors. Got to meet a bunch of the Romance Divas for about fifteen minutes, as I’d missed the big meet-up, which made me sad, but it was still fun.
Then came Sunday. I woke up feeling freaking AWFUL. Made it to the lobby, thought I was going to die, tried to sleep on the couch, and then finally had the genius idea that I could, you know, get a Coke and see if that helped. It did, but not as much as meeting up with Kathryn Smith in the lobby and chatting for like three hours until I felt capable of standing up again. She is awesome, btw, so go buy all of her books and read them and love them, because it was totally fun hanging out with her.
The whole thing was totally fun. I don’t know that I would ever do that sort of drive-by con thing again, or at least not without more sleep and after being so sick for a week beforehand. It was rough, and I’m still recovering. Not to mention how much cons in general take out of me, really, because of my various social anxieties and phobias and hatred of not being home and all of that stuff. This one was especially weird because I wasn’t rooming with Caitlin and had none of my League pals there (well, Michelle Rowen was there but I only got to see her for a few minutes), really, so I felt very Without A net, if you know what I mean, and it was scary. So I think going to cons by myself is something I won’t be trying again.
BUT. I do have Dragon*Con coming up, which I’m very excited about because I love Dragon*Con, even if I am constantly scared those enormous hotels are going to collapse or something while I’m inside them. So if you are going to Dragoncon, I’ll be posting my schedule as soon as I get it (which should be shortly) and I hope to see you there!
Have I forgotten anything?