Wednesday, May 18, 2011

you guys!

I flew back into Atlanta early Tuesday morning, on a 6:00am flight out of Logan.  It had been a while since I had been in Boston (I actually don't think I'd been in Boston or even anywhere near it since college, which seems like it should be that long but was, in actuality, almost twelve years ago), but aside from the weather being ridiculously cold and dreary, it was exactly as I remembered it, including the automated voice on the Red Line on the T which informed me that "Charles/MGH" was the next stop for, like, three stops in a row.

The book events, all of them, were great.  I had conferred with a few friends in the writing business beforehand about the very fact of doing any live book events, and one of them in particular (my friend from high school Deanna Fei, whose book is out in paperback now) told me that she had been told that one is not a "real author" until they have a book reading at which only two people show up, and one of those two people is the author's mom.  So I had some real fears that this might happen to me, and that I would just be crushed because, you know, I just spent six days away from my kids in order to do all this stuff.  

But you guys!  You guys really made it worthwhile.

This was the turnout at The Coop in Cambridge on Monday.  It was a great venue, and it was actually the only venue at which they set up a podium with a microphone, which was perfect, because after the other two events and doing all those radio interviews, I was kind of starting to lose my voice.  I can't help it, I'm not much of a projector when I talk, usually I'm using my dulcet tones to soothe, like Smoove B.

The book tour (short as it was; I wouldn't have minded going to more cities, and maybe in the future I will, depending on how my schedule and how things with the book are going) was so much fun.  Even the smallest event, which was in Philly, drew more than 20 people, and even if one of those people was clearly there primarily to eat cheese and drink free wine, he was at the least very attentive, and if I may say, his large beard was magnificent.

It was fantastic to meet so many readers, of course--and I was impressed because some of you guys have been reading for a long time, I had more than a few people come with their old copies of Issue #1 (and only) of Scutmonkey Comicsvery old skool.  (Fair warning: clicking that link may cause cortical blindness.  White font on a black background with hot pink accents--mistakes were made.)

But what was really amazing was to have the chance to connect with the many, many old friends that I picked up along the way.  In the course of my six days on the road, I caught up with my family, and some of my oldest friends from high school, college, med school and residency.  Guys, I had dinner in Boston with my old Orgo professor and my old pre-med advisor, and we talked about our kids, like I was a grown-up person or something.  It was like "This Is Your Life, Michelle Au"  Blew my mind.

And I think that's what I got out of the book tour most of all.  The events were a blast, and I can only hope that it's going to help the book get some buzz or traction in this busy summer market (speaking of which, my book makes a pretty awesome graduation present, if you happen to be choosing between my book and, like, Betty White's new memoir) but most of all it reminded me of how lucky I am to have so many amazing people in my life, and that where you've been is just as important as what comes next.  

OK, I've got a ton of catching up to do right now, but more soon.  And thank you again to everyone who came to my book events, it really meant a lot to me to see you all there.  Don't forget, people in the Southeast, I still do have one more book event tomorrow evening, 7:00pm at the Atlanta History Center.  Information can be found here or here, RSVP to reserve a spot, or you can buy tickets at the door.


  1. Anonymous3:55 PM

    I thought that was Prof. Miwa in the Boston pic! Great turnout. Congratulations. Sounds like it was a great trip!!

  2. Molly5:42 PM

    My sister is in the Cambridge picture and I am in the New york pic!
    Loved the reading and loved the book!

  3. Anonymous11:00 PM

    Congrats on your success and I am glad you enjoyed your time. Also quick question, what does it say on the guy's red sweater in the front row? Block Islam?

  4. Uh, maybe Block Island? Thanks everyone! I had a good time.

  5. Anonymous10:33 AM

    Re Philly: Not only did that one guy have a great beard, but he also had magnificent long yellow fingernails. I got to glance over repeatedly at them during the Q&A.

  6. Renee1:20 AM

    I got your book today! In Brisbane, Australia! Now to go find a kangaroo... I can't wait to start reading but since its my reward for passing all my exams I should probably start studying for said exams first.

  7. I was super disappointed that I wasn't able to make it. BUT, I picked up a copy today and read it in one go. (And I abandon most books at around page 50, so that is high praise.)

  8. Anonymous11:28 PM

    Cal and I are tied 2-2 in our rock, papers, scissors game from last night. Can you let him know that we still need to finish the match? Thanks.