Friday, October 02, 2009


In Stores

Yesterday my agent called and we spoke on a number of subjects--what to write next, the fact that I am going to have a baby and should not attempt to write after he is born (at least for a while), the competitiveness of "Fall's Big Books" for debut novelists like me. And then she asked: "Is your book in stores? Have you seen it?"

"Uh, well. Uh," I said. "I mean, I've heard reports."

"What about bookstores in Queens?"

"Uh, there are no bookstores here. I mean, I think there is a Barnes and Noble in Flushing. I've heard."

I would like it if there were bookstores here. I have even come around to feeling like it would be nice to have a Fairway, or Whole Foods, or practice studio for budding indie rock musicians. I mean, I've never really lived in any of the certifiably hip hipster neighborhoods of New York--they all tend to get hip AFTER I leave. Mostly, I don't mind. My takeout lunches are very cheap and very healthy (translation: ethnic food) However, my choice of habitat has also always meant: no bookstores.

I've also been working on a couple of workshops and presentations I'll tell you about. So, that's kept me at home, plastered to my chair and computer. When I finally do manage to leave the apartment, it will be in search of maternity jeans that actually fit.

And, frankly, I've been too scared to go look in a bookstore. I mean, what if it's all a dream? I'd rather hang on to the dream than not see my book for sale. Isn't that what writers do anyway? Just live up here in our heads?

So, it was very nice when a friend sent me the photos below, which he apparently took at the Barnes and Noble in Tribeca.

Many thanks, Scott and Debbie! And also to all my Facebook friends who have sent me photographic proof that my book exists as a physical thing.

Get in there! Stand around looking shy/suspicious. Eventually, an employee will ask you if you need anything. Then you can say, "Um, that's my book." And they'll make you sign them, and put special stickers on the outside, and maybe even take pictures with you. Anyway, that's what happened with E. Don't deny yourself this great pleasure!

P.S. Big maternity item to splash out on: Citizens dark-wash bootcut maternity jeans, about 2 sizes up from your pre-pregnancy size. I got my usual style, the Ingrid, in a 30 maternity. Wore 3x/week for last 3 months of preg. and 3-4 months or so after (jeans are last thing you'll get back into). I know you have the same non-preg jeans, so you'll like these. Oh, and buy a couple of wrap/v-neck nursing tops (elegant, comfortable; you can also wear them now to show off your awesome cleavage). You'll feel far less schlubby in a time when you need that boost, you won't have to think about clothes much at all, and you can thank me later.
Dude. All this business about cleavage . . . it's a lie!

Interesting about the Jeans. I will definitely pounce on those.
My pre-ordered Amazon copy just arrived on Saturday! Read the first pages, but had to return to a work project (but I can't wait to get back!).
Congrats on the book and baby!

I was just complaining about no bookstores in Queens yesterday. Also, the libraries seem to be closed all the time (or at least whenever I want a book). It cuts down on random impulse reading.
Thanks, Mindy! Re Queens--I know. We have in our neighborhood a guy who sleeps in a van, and sells books on the sidewalk. And this is fine, but I do wish there were a good independent bookstore. Perhaps eventually. Thank you for your good wishes!
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