The Friday Five!

1. Okay, I am SUPER EXCITED that I got the go ahead to announce my April tour dates for this Five. Yes! This is for the paperback of WHAT HAPPENED TO GOODBYE, which will be in stores on April 9th. Here’s where I’ll be (there may be SOME changes but I’m told this is pretty solid in terms of plans):

April 16th: Flyleaf Books, Chapel Hill NC

April 17th: Books and Books, Miami FL

April 18th: The Booksellers at Laurelwood, Memphis TN

April 19th: Anderson’s Bookshop, Naperville IL

April 20th: Barnes and Noble, Huntington Beach CA

April 21st: LA Times Book Festival, Los Angeles CA

April 22nd: Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park WA

April 23rd: Book People, Austin TX

If I’m not coming near you, never fear: I’m doing another tour in June for THE MOON AND MORE and I’ll be hitting a bunch of other cities. (And by hit, I mean visit. I would not hit your city, I promise.)

2. In other promotional news, I did my first Twitter chat this week. I was VERY nervous because I knew it would be fast and furious and also because my internet out here in the country is a bit wonky, subject to cutting out at any moment. Between answering questions in less than 140 characters AND making sure to include the hashtag #TheMoonandMore, it was pretty intense. But so worth it! Especially because at one point, my chat was trending. I have proof and everything!

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And I am in good company. I mean, Duck Dynasty? I’ll take it.

3.  If you’ve read Just Listen, you might remember this quote: ““Music is a total constant. That’s why we have such a strong visceral connection to it, you know? Because a song can take you back instantly to a moment, or a place, or even a person. No matter what else has changed in your or the world, that one song says the same, just like that moment.” I totally had this happen to me last night on the way home from dinner with my husband. This song came on the radio that I hadn’t heard in, easily, ten or fifteen years. It was from a Pink Floyd album I listened to all through my senior year of high school, which was a pretty miserable time for me. Okay, totally miserable. I honestly try NOT to listen to that music anymore but it does take me right back to this raw, awful place. But there it was, on the radio, and just like that, I was seventeen and so hurt and weird and scared. Boom! I put my hand on my face and my husband said, “Are you okay?” I said, “Yeah.” Because now, all these years later, I AM okay. Then, not so much. It does get better. But all it takes is a song, apparently, to remember when it wasn’t so good. (If you care to listen, the song is “One Slip,” and it’s here.) Personally, I’m going to wait a little while before I listen to it again.

4. There is truly NOTHING better than when you find a book that is SO GOOD you can’t think about anything but reading it. That happened to me this week with Maria Semple’s WHERE’D YOU GO, BERNADETTE. I’d seen that it made a bunch of Best Of lists, and heard some good buzz, but I was honestly blown away by how amazing it was. It’s the kind of book you can’t even do justice by describing, other than to say it’s written in this unorthodox way, is wholly original, and you will NOT want to put it down. It’s what I call a “Clear Your Schedule” book, that addictive. (Gone Girl was the last book I read that was like that. I lost a lot of time, but it was totally worth it.) Anyway, now I totally have a crush on both this book AND Maria Semple, who is not on Twitter, which is a good thing because if she was I’d be totally fangirling all over her. I will confess to sending a fawning email to her Facebook page. Hey, when something is good, you’re pretty much obligated to spread the word. It’s like a rule.

5. Big happenings here in Chapel Hill tomorrow: it’s the UNC-Duke game, and we’re playing at home. I am already nervous, which shows you what a basketball nerd I am. Last night, at dinner, I was sitting next to a guy who was joking about how he had two tickets to the game for sale. I wish! Truth: I have lived in Chapel Hill since I was three years old. I grew up on campus, skateboarding in The Pit and doing cartwheels outside of Greenlaw Hall while my dad taught his classes. Then I WENT to UNC, and later returned to teach there myself. I have never lived anywhere else. And I have only been to ONE basketball game. ONE. I’m embarrassed to even admit that, but there it is. We just never had access to tickets, and I got comfortable watching from home or at the houses of friends. But SOMEDAY I am going to get to a UNC-Duke game. My friend Jenny Han and I are trying to figure out how we can get on list to be considered for season tickets. I would go to every game! I’d stay until the buzzer no matter what the score! I would scream my lungs out! It will happen. I’m determined. But in the meantime, I will be here on Saturday, biting my nails and screaming loud enough to probably be HEARD at the Dean Dome. Bring on March Madness!

Have a good weekend, everyone!