FORGE Book Tour details!

The short version: Five weeks. Texas. AZ. MO. non-NYC New York.   New England. Mid-Atlantic (incl NYC). Texas, Round 2. West Coast. Mid-West and down the mighty Mississippi. Miami so I can drink Cuban coffee, which I will really need by the end of November. Final event at the bookstore closest to my house.

In some areas I will only be speaking in schools. Why? “Logistical requirements” was the answer I received from the Powers of the Booktour. (You thought authors had any control over these things? Ha!)

In the unlikely event that I am not coming to your region (hello Alaska and Hawaii and North Dakota), you can still get a signed copy of my book through the good graces of my local independent bookstore, river’s end bookstore in Oswego, NY. When you call them to order the book, be sure to give the name of the person for whom you want me to sign it.



Friday, October 15, 2010 – Reading Rockstars Webb Middle School, Austin, Texas  **Not a Public Event

Saturday, October 16 and Sunday, October 17, 2010 – Texas Book Festival, Austin, Texas

Monday, October 18, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Barnes & Noble, Dallas, Texas

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Changing Hands Bookstore, Tempe, Arizona

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Reading Reptile Bookstore; 5pm-7pm public event at store, Kansas City, Missouri

Thursday, October 21 and 22, 2010 – NY State Council of English Teachers Conference ** Not a Public Event

Saturday, October 23, 2010 – Read-A-Thon Teen Book Festival Fundraiser @ Barnes & Noble – Pittsford – Rochester, New York (Public event 3PM)

Monday, October 25, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Red Fox Bookstore, Glens Falls, New York. Public event details to come.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 – School visit; Public event – Adult Panel discussion and book signing at The Bookstore Plus, Lake Placid, New York

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 – School visits; 4PM public event at The Flying Pig Bookstore, Shelburne, Vermont 4pm

Thursday, October 28, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Porter Square Books, Cambridge, Massachusetts; public event at Brookline Public Library, sponsored by Children’s Bookshop, Brookline, Massachusetts

Friday, October 29, 2010 – School visits; 3:30 or 4PM Teachers/Librarians event Wellesley Booksmith. Wellesley, Massachusetts

Saturday, October 30, 2010 – Book Fest, sponsored by Bank Street College of Education, New York, New York

Monday, November 1, 2010 – School visits; Books, Bytes and Beyond Event Public event, Glen Rock, New Jersey

Tuesday, November 2, 2010 – Valley Forge National Historic Park; Evening event open to the public at Children’s Book World, Haverford, Pennsylvania

Wednesday, November 3, 2010 – School visits organized by Booktenders; Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation Middle School event at Parkway Central Library, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Thursday, November 4, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Reading Is Fundamental; Washington, DC

Friday, November 5, 2010  – School visits; Afternoon event at Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, Texas

Saturday, November 6, 2010 – Sam Houston State University Conference, Corpus Christi, Texas – ** not a public event**

Monday, November 8, 2010 – School visits sponsored by University Bookstore; public evening event at the Seattle Public Library, Ballard Branch sponsored by Secret Garden Bookshop, Seattle, Washington

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Powell’s Bookstore; 7PM public event at Powell’s Bookstore at Cedar Hills Crossing, Beaverton, Oregon

Wednesday, November 10, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Hicklebee’s; 7PM public event at Kepler’s Books, Menlo Park, California

Friday, November 12, 2010 – School visits sponsored by The Bookworm, Omaha, Nebraska

Saturday, November 13, 2010 – Teacher event and public event at The Book Stall, Winnetka, Illinois

Monday, November 15, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Anderson’s Bookshop; 7PM public event at Anderson’s, Naperville, Illinois

Tuesday, November 16, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Pudd’nHead Books, Webster Groves, Missouri; Public evening event at St. Louis County Library, St. Louis, Missouri

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 – School visits; WKU Library, Warren County Public Library systems, Barnes & Noble, Bowling Green, Kentucky Details to come.

Thursday, November 18, 2010 – School visits sponsored by Octavia Books, New Orleans, Louisiana

Friday, November 19, 2010 and Saturday, November 20, 2010 – Miami Book Festival, Miami Dade College, Miami, Florida

Tuesday, November 23, 2010 – 6pm Public event at river’s end bookstore, Oswego, New York

And then? And then???

Then I will take the Mother of All Naps.

Harvesting those writing questions again

I’m off on a totally cool adventure today. In my absence, please tell me any of your writing or publishing questions that I forgot to answer, so I can answer them next week.

Feel free to make up new ones, too.

Do you know anyone who lives around San Francisco? Tell them to check out the “Private Party” that Books Inc. is throwing for me on Sunday, March, 22nd. Tickets need to be purchased ahead of time, so call today.

One Month and Counting!!!!!!! (and more W&PQ)

Let the countdown begin!

WINTERGIRLS goes on sale one month from today!!! In a month, I’ll be on my way to the airport to catch a flight out to California for the beginning of the book tour.

The spring will be almost as much of a travel blur as last fall was.

Laurie’s Totally Excellent Spring & Summer Roadtrips:
1. Book Tour
2. Visit to Lima, Peru
3. Los Angeles Times Book Festival
4. College graduation of Daughter #3 (YAY!!! ::throws confetti and dances::)
5. International Reading Association conference
6. American Library Association conference

The good news is that I won’t be on the road for such long stretches this time. Being able to come home to my husband keeps me sane, even if it’s only for a couple of days.

Oh, and I’m going to New York City in a few days for some interviews and meetings. I have no clue what to wear. I always feel like a hick when I go to the Big Apple. Probably because I am a hick. Hicks are the new geeks, don’t you know.

My wardrobe issues would all be solved if the rest of the world would join me in my version of sartorial splendor: flannel shirt and jeans, pony tail and sunscreen. What more does a girl need?

I can’t believe there is only a month left until the book is out! My stomach is jumpy and nervous and excited and freaking out just a bit.

Gah. That last sentence didn’t make much sense, did it?

You wrote: what’s it like when on tour, for your writing? Do you have much time/energy left for writing, do you make yourself work on a particular project, or is it only if a deadline’s edging close for a contracted project that you would write while on tour? (It sounds like you need to get this one done before the tour – which suggests you don’t have much time for writing at all – is that frustrating or are you kept too busy to notice that much?)

I do not know what book tours are like for other authors, so my answer only pertains to me.

I ADORE going on book tour. It’s fun and rewarding. I also really, really appreciate the fact that my publisher is willing to spend money putting me on the road, and that booksellers are willing to go to all the trouble and preparations required to set up my visits to their stores and the schools they work with. Because I value what these folks are doing for me so highly, my time and energy while on tour is fully at their disposal.

What does this mean? It means there are days when I have to wake up at 3:30 am, catch a flight to the next city, spend all day signing books and visiting schools and stores, grab veggie wraps from Subway for lunch and dinner, do an evening library presentation and fall into another hotel bed at about 10 pm. Even a relaxed day will start at 9 am and not stop until 9 or 10pm.

But like I said: I love this!! It is energizing to meet readers and I am always honored when people take the time to come out to a bookstore to see me.

The down side? Well, I get sick of the veggie wraps. I rarely have enough time to exercise. And it is very challenging to squeeze in writing time. I try. Usually I can steal half an hour or so while waiting for a plane. And flying time is a wonderful place to jot down ideas, or let my mind drift to new projects. The publicists try to schedule in the occasional day that has some down time – that’s always nice – so there are a few extra hours on days like that for the writing. However it’s impossible to get consistent blocks of time from day to day.

But I must admit, it’s a pretty sweet problem to have, so I’m not whining. I am incredibly fortunate and blessed to have the chance to go on book tour.


Mad Woman Goes on Book Tour

If all goes well, I head to Minnesota in a few hours. I promise lots of pictures and tour details for the next month.

Before we get to the schedule, I’d like to puff out my chest and proudly point out that my daughter Bookavore (aka Stephanie) has some great quotes about economic sustainability and getting folks to shop locally.

And…. Brilliance Audio just released a wonderful audio version of CHAINS!! The reader, Madisun Leigh, does a wonderful job – so wonderful that I was in tears by the end of the first chapter. I can’t wait until I have time to listen to the whole thing!

And… not only did I buy The Dress for the fancy-pants National Book Award gala, but I took it to Mary Jean’s Alterations in Oswego and it will be ready when I get off the plane in a few weeks. BH ordered his tux there, too.

And… my absentee ballot arrived on time and I voted!!!!

And….. the book tour appearances below are my public gigs. On most days, I’ll be visiting schools during the day and then doing an evening appearance at most stores. I am really sorry I won’t be headed to the West Coast on this tour, but you can’t have everything, and my cup is totally overflowing right now, so I’m not going to make a fuss. (FYI – I’ll be going back out on tour in March. Keep your fingers crossed.)


Tues, October 21 at 7:00 pm : Barnes & Noble, Roseville, MN 651-639-9256

Wed., October 22 at 6:00 pm: Wild Rumpus, Minneapolis, MN 612-920-5005

Thursday, October 23 (AKA MY BIRTHDAY) at 5:00 pm: Bookies, Denver, CO 303-759-1117

Friday, October 24 at 7:00 pm: Tattered Cover, Denver, East Colfax store 303-436-9219

Saturday, October 25 at 1:00 pm: The Bookstall of Chestnut Court, Winnetka 847-446-0882

Sunday, October 26 at 2:00 pm: Center for Teaching through Children’s Books, National-Louis University, Skokie. This is at 5202 Old Orchard Road – 3rd Floor Public Forum Room. Sorry, I don’t have a contact phone number, but I do know that lots of teachers and grad students are expected to attend. At least, I hope they do.

Monday, October 27: Barnes & Noble, Skokie (no public event, but will have signed books available) 847-676-2230

Tuesday, October 28 at 7:00 pm: Omaha Public Library, An all-city event in Centennial Hall at the Alumni House on the UNO Campus, 6705 Dodge St. 402-444-4800

Wednesday, October 29 at 7:00 pm: Anderson’s, Naperville 630-355-2665

Thursday, October 30 at 7:00 pm: Harry Schwartz Bookshop (Mequon store) 262-241-6220

Saturday, November 1: several appearances during the day: Delaware Book Festival

Monday, November 3: The Children’s Bookstore (no public event, but will have signed books available)

Monday, November 3 at 7:00 pm: Barnes & Noble, McLean, VA 703-506-2937

Tuesday, November 4: Politics & Prose, Wash. DC (drop-in booksigning at 12:30) 202-364-1919

Wednesday, November 5: BookEnds, Ridgewood (no public event, but will have signed books available) 201-445-0726

Thursday, November 6 at 6:45 pm: Merritt Bookstore, Millbrook, NY 845-677-5857

Friday, November 7: Odyssey Bookstore, South Hadley, MA (no public event, but will have signed books available) 413-534-7307

Monday, November 10 at 7:00 pm: Little Shop of Stories, Decatur 404-373-6300

Tuesday, November 11: The Reading Tree, Alpharetta (no public event, but will have signed books available) 770-740-7171

Wednesday, November 12 and Thursday, November 13: Miami Book Fair (school events only)

Friday, November 14 at 4:30 pm: Octavia Books 504-899-7323

Saturday, November 14 — Special school event only, sponsored by Octavia Books

Tuesday, November 18 – Teen Press Conference

Tuesday, November 18, 7pm – All twenty of this year’s National Book Award Finalists will read from their books at New York City’ s New School

Wednesday, November 19, National Book Foundation Awards Dinner and Ceremony

Friday, November 21 – Tuesday, November 25: National Council of Teachers of English annual conference and ALAN Workshop

Thursday, December 4 at 6:00 pm: The River’s End Bookstore, Oswego 315-342-0077 (followed by a fundraising dinner for the Oswego Public Library!)

Saturday, December 6 at 6pm: Moravian Bookshop, Bethlehem, PA 610-866-5481

And now I should probably try to sleep.
Yeah, right.

Getting antsy

Click on the video below and push the time bar to the 50 second mark.

Ready? Push play and sing along with me as loud as you can:


That’s my life right now. CHAINS will be released officially on October 21st, the day my book tour begins, two days before my birthday. The nice people at S&S have posted a CHAINS excerpt for you to read while you are waiting for the book.

The details of the book tour are in the last stages of being firmed up, but it looks like I’ll be visiting:
36 schools (these presentations are not open to the public)
19 bookstores (this includes 2 stores in December after the official tour is over)
3 presentations to groups of librarians and teachers. Maybe 4.

At the end of the tour, I head for San Antonio, TX for the NCTE/ALAN Conference. And then I go home, turn off the phone, and take a nap.

Right now I feel like a basketball player after the warm-ups are over and before the National Anthem has been sung. My stomach is a little jumpy, my hands are sweaty, and I can’t wait until the referee blows her whistle and throws up the ball to start the game.

I am doing something new on this tour. I am bringing a portable digital projector so I can show a visual presentation to everyone. The “show” gives a little background about me and my writing, then focuses on my research and writing of CHAINS. If you live in Central NY, you can see a sneak preview of this show next Tuesday at 7pm at the Barnes & Noble in Dewitt, NY, where I’ll be speaking at their Educators’ Appreciation Night.

While we were running this morning, BH and I saw a gorgeous red-tailed hawk sweeping over a meadow. When we got home (he cooked an awesome ham and egg breakfast), a second hawk about twice the size of the first one perched on the edge of our forest and allowed us to admire him.

It’s been quite a day.