The Friday Five!

1. Whew! This has been a nutty week. I did my first school visit in AGES (to East Chapel Hill High, which was awesome), saw the paperback for ALONG FOR THE RIDE hit the NYT paperback Bestseller list at #6 (YOU guys are awesome) then participated in the Readergirlz Rock the Drop bookdrop on Thursday, which was like a crazy scavenger hunt, full of adventure. Here’s the idea: it was YA Lit Day, so to celebrate, you were supposed to drop some YA books out in your community for someone else to find and read. It just so happened that I had just realized I had a bunch of books I needed to give away, so this was perfect timing. I printed out my Rock the Drop bookplates, taped them in, and set off:

I dropped the first one at Weaver Street Market in Carrboro, outside in the cafe. I got some weird looks, but there’s a guy who dances on the lawn there on a regular basis, so no one was really that fazed. I shot a pic, put it up on Twitter, and headed to my NEXT drop:

For this one, I had to 1) double park at UNC, risking the most vigilant parking police known to man 2) do said double parking OUTSIDE South Building, where the chancellor was probably watching and 3)run across traffic to leave the book while people stared like I was a crazy person. But I did it, because this is the Old Well, on the UNC Campus, and is pretty much the most famous landmark there. It had to be a drop. As did in front of the Student Union, where I almost got hit by a bus dashing back to my car. Danger! Excitement! Next was:

This wall in front of the Franklin Street Post Office in Chapel Hill. I cannot TELL you how much of my teen years I spent sitting on this wall. Entirely too much. It was where we hung out when we weren’t across the street at Hector’s, drinking fruit punch, bothering the guys who worked the grill, and waiting for something to happen. I also got odd looks here, but I did back then too, so no biggie.
Next up, I went down MLK Blvd (formerly Airport Rd) to another serious blast from my past:

Yep, that’s the Flying Burrito. Correction: it’s the NEW Flying Burrito, as it’s been totally redone inside. But that sign that says RESTAURANT is still the same, and those are the same doors I unlocked every day at 11:30 or 5pm when I was opening wait. It was so crazy to remember that as I put my books on that chair. Back then, if you would have told me someday I’d be getting ready to have my TENTH book out, I would have laughed in your face. Unless you were my customer, in which case I would have smiled politely and refilled your iced tea, as I was broke and needed every tip I could get. But I digress.

I was having so much fun, but it was time to pick up my kid from preschool. On the way home, though, we swung a BIT out of the way for one last drop:

This is the front porch of the Maple View Farm Ice Cream Store, which has the most gorgeous views of pasture and cows you ever saw. I was a bit worried about this one, as nobody was really there yet, but it was a nice day so I hope it got busy later and someone took this book home.

I hope, actually, that these ALL found homes, as did the few others I dropped later that day: one that I gave to a girl getting on the U Bus, asking her to leave it on a seat there; one in the Pit and two at Meadowmont, at Brixx and Cafe Carolina (Best!Cupcakes!Ever!) respectively. My husband pointed out that people might NOT take the books, as they might think they belonged to someone else. But hopefully someone was bold enough to open it up and see they could have it. Otherwise…well, I just hope it doesn’t rain anytime soon.

2. Okay, so that was a LONG number one. I’m going to keep these other four short. In other news this week, we got in the NEW Dessen Racing t-shirts that you guys helped us design, and if I MAY say so myself, they rule:

We’ve been getting questions from readers, asking if we’re selling these online or anything. We’re not, they’re totally for giveaways, but we have a fair amount and I’m hoping to bring some on tour with me. Also we’ll keep doing giveaways on the Dessen Racing Facebook page. So stay tuned!

3. Confession: I am listening to Bethenny Frankel’s A PLACE OF YES on audiobook and am now officially and totally obsessed with her. If she had a cult, I would totally already be handing out flowers at the airport for her. Not even kidding. Should I be embarrassed? Probably. Am I? No. Because I am OWNING IT, as she says to. So there!

4. My goal for this weekend is to get over my fear of picking up our chickens. I have to learn to do this for when my husband’s not around and I have to get them back in the coop at night. I see him do it. My kid, who is THREE, can do it. But I just freeze up. I don’t know what I’m afraid of. Death by pecking? Wish me luck….

5. Finally, just a big thank you to everyone who helped ALONG FOR THE RIDE hit the paperback bestseller list. I’m always so flattered that people go out and buy the books the first week, you guys are amazing, and I am so, so thankful. I would seriously pick up a chicken for you, that’s how grateful I am. Really.

Have a good weekend, everyone!