4/21/13

My Exciting Life as an Author (Read no further if you are easily plagued by envy and jealousy)

Put on your sunglasses! The dazzling, hot brightness of my literary career is likely to burn a hole right through your retina.  Saturday, I was invited to participate in a book signing at the illustrious Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. I was invited by Prospect Park Books, the publisher of Literary Pasadena, an anthology of short fiction that includes my story "Genius Unleashed."

Naturally, my schedule is extremely busy, what with all my important obligations to the grocery story and laundry machine. But since I like to show my appreciation to the little people, I promised the good people at Prospect Park Books that I would try and squeeze them in.

They insisted on sending a car, but--now that I am famous and people are always looking to me as a role model--I said, "No! The planet needs me to take mass transit." Here I am on the bus showing ordinary people how authentic and normal I am. I'm with author Petrea Burchard. (I think you can see that I am bit more authentic than Petrea, but that's because I'm all about my art and Petrea is all about her cheekbones.)

When your work is in an anthology, you naturally are delighted to share the spotlight with fellow co-authors, and I was especially delighted because I am not the sort of person who seeks glory. So, of course, it was a RELIEF to stand in the back of our booth and hand copies of Elizabeth, the First Wife, to Lian Dolan, whose previous book, Helen of Pasadena, was an LA Times best seller and who perfect strangers come up and talk to as if they are all part of the same carpool.  Lian has a story in Literary Pasadena too. So do Naomi Hirahara and Dianne Emley, Wally Rudolph and Petrea, who were all also at the signing. They are all kind of a big deal, but again, I'm all about my art so, you know, I don't begrudge them their awards and per diems and book club invitations. Give me an un-air-conditioned bus and a little carpel tunnel syndrome and I'm good!

After the signing was when the real fun began. Here I am hobnobbing with the always charming Julia Sweeney (The tiny person to the right of the big head).

Julia read from her new memoir, If It's Not One Thing, It's Your Mother. I am sure she wanted to ask me all about The Goddess Lounge, etc, but I just felt like: It's your moment, Julia. Enjoy it!  I already spent an hour handing books to Lian Dolan. I'm good.

XOX to all of you. One day I may be too good for you, but, for now, I am still humble me.

20 comments:

Olga said...

Many congrats on your literary successes. remember:

Nothing is more deceitful than the appearance of humility. It is often only carelessness of opinion, and sometimes an indirect boast.
Jane Austen

Daisy said...

Congratulations on your "rising star" Margaret! I hope you will remember us little people when you are rich and famous.

Petrea Burchard said...

It's fun to spend a day with Margaret.

I know you're being all humble (see Olga's comment), but it's no small thing to be an author signing books at the LA Times Festival of books. It felt like a milestone to me.

Bellis said...

Yay!!! Well done Margaret for being one of those exalted authors in that little booth. It wasn't your fault that Lian stole the show by having copies of her new book (which mentions the Caltech Women's Club! - she warned us she was doing research when we asked her to give a talk). In the shuttle bus photo, I'm struck by the fact that you have beautiful teeth! But why is Petrea trying to prise her head off?

Petrea Burchard said...

Don't answer that, Margaret.

It was a lot of fun to hang out with Lian, Dianne, Naomi, Wally, and all the people from Prospect Park Books.

Ms M said...

Great "report" of the day! :-) You write with such a wicked sense of humor ~

And congrats to you and Petrea for your literary successes!

Star said...

Gosh, your head is getting so big that I think you need a dose of Marcus Aurelius' "Meditations"! (Great post! Thanks!)

Alison said...

So glad you can still find the time for us small-fry!..Congras Margaret!
Alison xx

Desiree said...

Being easily plagued by envy and jealousy I almost skipped this jewel.
So glad you are keeping it authentic.

Jaime...My Love said...

Congratulations! I am so happy that you have gained this success all on your own; what an inspiration!

Margaret said...

Bellis: Coincidentally, I had my teeth cleaned the day prior. As for Petrea, I think she is just emphasizing her beautiful cheeks.

Pasadena Adjacent said...

Was Marcus Aurelius there too? congratulations!!! that is a big event. Now if you had bothered to walk down the block and take a tour of the 1932 olympic swim stadium then you could link me to the fat head sitting in front of you.

sis you really take a van?

Pasadena Adjacent said...

fluc spell check

Pasadena Adjacent said...

did you hear Joyce Carol Oates lecture? friend Mary was very impressed

Christina Schwarz said...

Rarely have I read such an accurate portrayal of the literary life--and never have I read such an amusing one. Now how about a South Pasadena library evening to cap things off?

Susan Campisi said...

I laughed out loud several times reading this. You are funny, Margaret! As Petrea said, it is a big deal you were there signing books. Congrats to you both! I hope you'll sign my copy of Literary Pasadena.

Margaret said...

PA: I took a train AND a bus. I did not see Oates. Alas.

Tina: glad to amuse you. I am waiting on the library. I'll keep you posted.

Susan: I will be happy to song your book!

Cafe Pasadena said...


I know there were special book reader & book buyer buses Some leaving from bookstores and libraries. We're u guys on one of those?

Despite what I recently wrote, I still haven't returned to the BookFest. Maybe next year.

Cafe Pasadena said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cafe Pasadena said...

And, MF, lemme me be one of the last to wish you a Happy World Book Day!!