Tomorrow I leave for New York and BEA, which will also be my first work trip in, like, many months. Needless to say I am scrambling today, trying to tie up every loose end I can before I go. I have clothes, but they are not packed. Lists, but they are not done. Plans, but they are not firmed up. I am hoping all of this will happen sometime in the next twenty four hours. We’ll see.
I’m really excited about BEA, if only because it’s been so long since I went to any conferences. I missed the last two rounds of them all because I was pregnant, and then had a little baby, but now it’s time to jump back in. To be honest, I always get a little overwhelmed by these kind of industry events. I love to go and see friends, and people I only know via online, and go to cocktail parties and dinners and meet cool booksellers and librarians. That rocks. But a part of me, even before Sasha, always felt a little out of place, like it was still back here in NC, sitting on the back deck in my flipflops, listening to the frogs screech and looking up at a big, starry sky. I remember years ago, I was in Seattle doing a book tour, and the hotel where I was staying had a palm reader/tarot card person in the lobby during cocktail hour. (That’s an odd mix, I know, drinks and clairvoyance. Or maybe it’s not?) Anyway, this woman read my palm and said I would have a baby, but not for a couple of years, which turned out to be true. She also did this card thing, not tarot, but something else, and told me that I was a person who would always have two sides to my life, one in a city, one somewhere else. This wasn’t exactly true, but I did feel it had some truth to it. There’s this part of me that goes to NY and feels like all this writing stuff is real and true and BIG, and it’s great. But then I come home, and this place fits me so perfectly. I can’t imagine living anywhere else, truly. But it is fun to get a taste of a different world, or many worlds, every once in a while.
Plus, there’s the shopping. I mean, it is New York. I have officially but myself on shopping restriction but I have a feeling my fortitude will be SORELY tested. Give me strength.
I’ll be back on Monday to report on my signings and cool author sightings. At the last BEA I attended, I shared an elevator with Stephen Colbert, which I am not sure can be topped. If I DO see anyone, though, you’ll hear about it here next week and, If I’m lucky, I might even have pictures. All I know for sure is I am going to try to wear my new book tour shoes and not sprain an ankle. And while I’m in them, I intend to stand in front of my hotel, listening to the sound of honking horns and busy streets, and look up at the sky. Then, after the whirlwind of books and people and more books and more people, it’s back here to the frogs again. At least for a little while.
I hope you all have a GREAT weekend. I’ll be trying to update on Twitter, so if you’re on there, look for me. I’m @sarahdessen.