Wednesday, April 13, 2011

live, from new york

Inexact science though it may have been, there clearly was enough interest in and around New York City to justify a book event there in May.  So we're on!  It will be held at the Columbia University bookstore on the Morningside Campus (or, as we used to call it in med school, "The Undergrad Campus," though every single other grad school of the university was on that same campus but us, the red-headed stepchild in Washington Heights) on Wednesday, May 11th.  WEDNSEDAY MAY 11th.  Burn it into your brain!  Or, you know, just remember it the normal way!

More details to follow, including the time of the event (I still have to find out the fine details myself), but I'm presuming it will be in the evening.  And perhaps afterward, if we're feeling good, we will all nip out to Coronet Pizza, the pizza that only tastes good when you're drunk (TM).

On a somewhat related topic, I have am taking the week of the book publication and the week afterwards as vacation time off work, in order to avail myself to do any and all publicity-type stuff related to bookery.  However, the more I read and learn about it, the more I realize that actual physical travel may only play a very small role in all this.  I'm doing book events in Atlanta (because I live here) and New York (because I lived there before I lived here, and also, I can stay at my parents house, which is FREE), but from all my research on the topic, actual physical appearances do very little to sell books, especially when you take the time and expense of the travel into account.  Also, to be honest, I am pretty busy at work and I have two little kids--if I'm leaving town for any reason, I have to maximize efficiency--for example, when I'm in Iowa City next weekend I have two talks, a book reading, and (hopefully) a reader meet-up scheduled for the two days I'll be there.  If I was younger or less encumbered, the idea of traveling for the sake of traveling might kind of fun (I distinctly remember relishing the seemingly jet-set adventure involved with med school interviews the first two or three times around--after that it just got very tiresome) but to be honest, I need to have a really compelling reason to leave my kids and go somewhere these days.  Actually, this trip to Iowa City is the first time I've traveled without either kid, ever.  I may weep.

I'm not saying that I don't want to travel for the book, of course.  I am completely committed, and as such, I will do whatever the occasion requires me to to.  DO YOU WANT ME TO BE ON YOUR SHOW, ELLEN DEGENERES?  I WILL TOTALLY BE ON YOUR SHOW BECAUSE I LOVE YOU AND YOUR BLAZERS AND ALSO YOU ARE ADORABLE.  (You too, Meredith Viera.)  But I am also acutely aware that the publishing industry is changing (this is just what I hear--changing relative to what I have no idea because I know nothing about publishing but I'm told it is in the middle of an evolution, like in the pre-Cambrian seas) and that a lot of book publicity now takes on the form of "virtual" book tours, where authors are interviewed or guest post or are somehow featured on various like-minded blogs around the internet.  And then we all put on goggled helmets and tactile-sense gloves and go around and shoot aliens with our space lasers!  (Oh wait, that's "virtual reality.")

Anyway, my point is, do join me in New York if you're in the area and not too busy (ooh!  I made these super cute little bookmarks that I'm going to give out!  Remind me to show you later, they are the greatest) but if you can't, why not help me with my virtual book tour?  Do you have a website that seems like we might have a like-minded readership?  It doesn't have to be medical, I read lots of news, academic, craft, photography, design, food, and parenting websites too.  I can come visit your blog!  Do you want to review my book?  Chat with me?  Have me do a guest post?  These are things I can do, and there are presents I can get you!  E-mail me, or contact my publicist!  And, by the way, if you're close personal friends with Ira Glass, tell him that if he could feature this excerpt as part of a cold open for "This American Life," I would die of happiness.  The theme of the show could be, "Places I Never Thought I'd Be," and the rest of the show could be about, you know, the war in Iraq or whatever.

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Special coupon section!

This will only apply to people who live in or around Atlanta, so if you don't live near here, don't bother to read this next part.

OK, are they all gone?  Great.  Let's talk mosquitoes again.  Regarding the last entry, Chuck wanted to offer any readers of this blog a special discount if they are interested in getting a mosquito system installed for their homes.  The discount will entitle you to one free refill of mosquito spray stuff free--a $200 value.  (The bucket of the stuff is 50 gallons, I think ours is supposed to last three months before it needs to be refilled.)  The coupon code is 7214H, so go ahead and give Chuck a call if you're interested, he does free evaluations of your home and whatnot, so there's not really that much to lose just to have him come by and give you advice.  Also, he looks a little like Alan Alda, though I'm sure that resemblance probably doesn't play as well down here as it might up north.


  1. Anonymous8:35 PM

    PERFECT! I have to go to the undergrad campus May 11 anyway to pick up my super $$ rental graduation gown and schlep it back to Washington Heights. Will be thrilled to come hear you speak - so happy the "in real life" book tour includes NYC!
    Jen, P&S '11

  2. christine8:39 PM

    Hurrah! As a *grad* student who already works on the undergrad campus, I'll totally be there.

  3. You need to get reviewed in magazines and such. I just saw the book by a Pediatrician that came out with your original cover in Readers Digest!! (I like your new one better anyway, things work out that way :)

  4. I don't live in ATL so I know I wasn't supposed to read the last little bit but wanted to let you know the Alan Alda reference made my night. Also, if you ever figure out how to combat your serious reaction to the bites please write about it! I get so itchy and bumpy from mosquito bites people think I have a disease.

  5. Hey, this is Jeff Lin's sister…I wish I could go, I voted yes from Colorado! But I won't be back in town until the end of May, so I guess that's that. Best of luck with the event!

  6. Good luck! I will definitely review your book on my blog (i preordered it on my kindle and can't wait to read it!) but this will probably not happen til after June 17 cause of the usmle. Wish I could come hear you talk in NYC!

  7. Perfect! We are coming all the way from Sydney :D

  8. come to Toronto!!!!! please ? :)

  9. Congrats on your book signing! I've also heard many of the same things you have: Book signings aren't as important as they used to be in selling books, the literary market is very different than even five years ago, and such. There doesn't appear to be a defined way to make a book successful anymore. That being said (written), I'd be happy to exchange excerpts or reviews for our books, since our audiences are similar and our books are both about becoming doctors. As much as I'd like to get on Ellen too, I hear that she doesn't have non-celebs on her show. Bummer! Maybe if our publicists packaged us together (two physician authors for the price of one) we'd have better luck...
    Tony Youn, MD