By Land and by Sea

You know you are lucky when one of your favorite friends offers to host a party and book discussion for you, and invites 40 of her closest friends (you live an hour away in a neighboring state, so these are 40 people you don’t know)! You feel a bit luckier when you hear that 35 are actually coming (no one gets response rates that good), they have all bought the book already, and several of them take the invite so seriously that they have been “cramming” to finish the book before they come. The wine is purchased, the gorgeous food is put out in the dining room… and then…it starts to POUR, and I mean torrentially POUR. The rain on the roof is so loud we have to raise our voices in the kitchen, and the neiBarrington1ghbor across the street calls to say she may have to find a boat and a paddle to get there. I run out to my car to grab my own copy of my book and I can’t quite get to the driver’s side door without hopping through a puddle that should have a name it is such an impressive body of water. My heart starts to sink a little. Trust me, I have done enough book events to know that on the sunniest of days with not a speck of traffic on the roads, somewhere between 10-25% of RSVPers mysteriously evaporate. I know, I know… life happens, kids get sick, babysitters disappear, an extra long day at work makes an evening out look about as appealing as sleeping in stilettos. But nothing seems to keep people in like the weather. Weather can knock a crowd of 25 down to 7 in a heartbeat. Snow in Boulder keeps people home (yes, Boulder, CO). Rain in RI will definitely do the same. But I tell my friend not to worry. And I mean it when I say that a conversation with even three people is always worth it. The connection with readers is what I am in it for, and quantity isn’t always quality when it comes tBarrington2o connection. Small is good. Intimate can be magical. But then a wash of wind and rain comes in through the door on the shoulders of a huddle of women. And then the door opens again. And then again. And before I know it there are 30 or more people talking and laughing and enjoying a night out in her beautiful (and dry) living room. And who knew that quantity and quality could be one and the same? Every woman I met was engaged, warm, interesting, thoughtful, and excited to talk about the book, my book! What a wonderful night. Thank you Barrington. And thank you Kirsten LaMotte. Being able to call you friend makes me lucky indeed!

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