The First Launch is the Sweetest
I attended a book launch of a friend on a Thursday evening. For Calgary in September this was a gentle warm evening – the end of our unusually hot, summer. The air was hazy from the smoke of not-so-distant forest fires. So the night of September 7th was memorable even before I entered the doors of the Memorial Park Library. I climbed the carpeted stairs to the second floor to the auditorium that is now home to Calgary WordFest.
Leslie was introduced by friend and writer Samantha Warwick. She guided Leslie through a series of questions designed (Leslie later told me) to help calm her down! It worked. By the end of the Q&A, Leslie was visibly relaxed and having fun. A few questions were invited from the audience and Leslie went on to read a short section from her book. Dropout is a deeply personal story about her experience as a parent within a school system that seemed to fail her daughter from grade 7 onward.
When Leslie finished, we were on our feet, applauding her memoir journey.
Leslie’s and my paths to publication were similar. Both our books took ten years to write. These were our first books but we had both written for magazines. We stuck to our writing roads with hopeful tenacity (despite those occasional detours of doubt) and the support of family, friends, and generous writing guides. We both made the decision to publish our books independently and turned to Page Two Strategies in Vancouver.
I know the thrill of that first book launch. As I waited in line for Leslie to sign, I was remembering my launch of Separation Anxiety in Red Deer.