Monday, June 09, 2008

The Post-Party Post

I FINALLY HAVE AN INTERNET CONNECTION AGAIN! So now I will post a recap of the book launch party, which despite tornado warnings, torrential rain, lightning, flash flooding, damaging winds, and hail, went off with nary a hitch on Saturday night. (Thanks to the gang at Encore! You are creative, clever, thoughtful people and I am going to need the recipe for the spinach-artichoke-cheese ball. I've got the DTs from cheese ball withdrawal already.)

First, a non-party photo taken in Schuler Books & Music in Lansing, Michigan. Recognize any of the books on this display?

I know! Jimmy Buffett and Jen Lancaster!!

A long shot of the buffet at the beginning of the evening. See the map? Each dish represented a state my characters drove through on their roadtrip. (PS to the Encore gang: Also? I'm going to need the recipe for the honey honey hazelnut triangles from Utah.)

These are some actors I hired to come to the party so it would look like I had a bunch of friends.

Everyone--turn around and look at the camera!

Here I am reading a particularly juicy part to the actors I hired. Would you believe me if I told you I flat-ironed my hair before the night began? Yes, it was THAT humid.*

One of these lovely young ladies was the real-life inspiration for Jillian. Care to guess which one? I took half a dozen roadtrips with her, and will be taking another small one to Madison with her this Thursday. (Now that gas is $4 a gallon, it's official: any trip longer than 40 minutes is really and truly a road trip. Pack the cooler!)

Me and my lovely sister-in-law, who took the photo from Schuler's bookstore above. She's my Michigan Connection and she is also very Awesome.

Look who totally surprised me, braving the tornadoes and rain and flash flooding, driving all the way from Chicago: Swishy, Manic, and special guest Trish Ryan!!! (Her first book came out recently. You should go buy it.) This was the first time I met Trish, and she is absolutely lovely and charming. You guys are crazy for driving through that stuff, but I love you for it and I'm glad you made it back safely.

(Also, don't we look like we should be the signal bar in a Verizon commercial?)

Other highlights from the night: so many of my Minnesota connection making the trip (love you guys!), my dentist AND my gynecologist attending (I had both ends covered), and my most-adorable nephew adding sound effects during the reading. As the night wore on, a confused-looking elderly couple wandered in and asked, "What are you advertising?"
I replied, "I'm having a book launch party! I wrote a book!"
They were non-plussed and still somewhat confused. I sensed a need for further clarification. So I said, "Look! We have snacks! Help yourselves to the buffet!"
Which they did, and then they left.
Thank you to everyone who braved the weather to help me celebrate!! I feel like the luckiest girl in the world.
*Not really. My hair truly is this curly if I leave it to its own devices when it's muggy out.


  1. Dang, that looks like fun! Congrats!

    I'll guess the lady on the right was your Jillian. She looks just like I pictured her in the book.

  2. p.s - Still time to enter my giveaway. I'm closing the contest at midnight.

  3. Congratulations! I need to interject a biographical note here. I met my wife when I was buying books & she was a cashier at Schuler's in Lansing.

  4. What a paaaar-tay. You look great- you can work the curly.

    I am so happy for you.

  5. Loved spending a whole 93 minutes with you, and can you believe it, for the whole time we were WITH YOU, IT DIDN'T RAIN. We left Chicago at 3:12 p.m. and got back to Chicago at 1:00 a.m... other than the time we were with you, IT RAINED THE WHOLE WAY THERE AND THE WHOLE WAY BACK.

    Unfortunately, TR wouldn't let us stop at any porn shops. Drat.

    Send porn. Uh, I mean cheese.

    LOVED meeting J and the real life Jillian, your parents, etc. etc.!

    Love ya!

  6. Thanks for sharing the pictures, that is so fantastic, many congrats! Is there anything we can do to help you promote the book on our own blogs?

    Also, I received my special 'gift' and I wanted to thank you, I love bookmarkers, they keep me from my very bad habit of dog-earring books, which my mother tells me is very rude, especially to library books.

    BTW, this week I'm giving away a subscription to Budget Travel magazine as a further inspiration to The Grand Tour theme! Stop by and tell me where you want to go on your dream holiday.

  7. Is it a good sign that when I ordererd another copy off Amazon it said "Hurry! Only one copy left!"?

  8. sounds like a great party!

    and... i want curly hair. no fair!

  9. Looks like a great party! I'm so bummed I missed it. But thankfully, I'm happy I didn't drive through those storms. I would not have done well!

    You look so cute!

  10. Congratulations!

    Lol - "I had both ends covered.."

  11. Jess, you look so beautiful in the pictures. Your happiness just glows on your face. I'm so happy for you; this is just the beginning of a very long and literary road to riches.

  12. What an awesome party! Dang! I could have driven up to meet you in person and you could have autographed my book. No wait. You couldn't have because I already loaned it out to a friend. That's right, your book is loan-worthy, which to me, is a very good thing.

    If you do any Milwaukee readings - book readings, not psychic readings (although either would be interesting) - let me know and I'll be there.

    Hi from VERY soggy Milwaukee. (Although at least OUR lake didn't wash away, which is more than you can say about the beautiful Dells.)

  13. you look beautiful!

    can i say, i finally received your book yesterday? barnes and noble sucks and I finally had to reorder it through Amazon. Amazon rules!

  14. Wait - honey hazelnut triangles! Please share if you get that recipe.

    Looks like a good time was had by all. :-)

  15. I was totally fixating on the hair, of the flat flat hair...the picture on my blog, of me with SLIGHTLY wavy hair? Like, just a hint of body? That's products and a curling iron, WASTED.

  16. Oh my GOODNESS! So much fun. And so well deserved. I started your book yesterday and am 75 pages into it (an accomplishment for a twinmom.) Jess, your book, it is SO MUCH FUN. I am awestruck. You are a brilliant writer.

  17. I'd love to have your book, but sadly I cannot find it here in Jakarta, Indonesia.

    Is there any chance you gift me the book signed with your autograph? Pleaseee..I'd be really grateful if you do.


  18. Anonymous10:07 PM

    What a fabulous party! Great pictures - thanks for sharing! And from one naturally curly haired girl to another, yours looked adorable.

  19. It was an amazing party. Your hair looked fabulous, your smile was amazing (honestly, if I'd known your dentist was there, I'd have accosted him/her and demanded the secret to Wisconsin whiteness), and a good time was had by all. Well worth the nine hour trip through all those tornadoes :)

    Are we invited to the launch for your next book, or did we eat too many meatballs and honey walnut squares???

  20. Hey, I just finished the book! Like, right now, in my cube at work, hiding. It's WONDERFUL! I only have one question. Can I play Denise when it becomes a movie? I can look 17, I swear. But seriously, I kept picturing her to look like Alison Lohman in White Oleander.

  21. I had to stop back again to tell you that I saw your book at Target today featured prominently as one of their recommended summer reads!

    I think that bodes well for sales!!!

  22. woohoo. this party looked like it rocked! paid actors and all!

  23. Jess, when are you coming to CT???

  24. Anonymous11:00 AM

    So glad the launch party went so well! It sounds like it was lots of fun, and full of good food *and* good entertainment. What more could someone ask in a party, except plenty of alcohol. (Was there alcohol?)