On bookselling and non-book blogging

I am back from my grand tour of midwestern hotels: one night in St. Paul for a bookseller trade show (MBA!), two nights in Grand Forks for a children’s book conference, then the following weekend a night in Dearborn for another bookseller trade show (GLIBA!).  It is a very small-time kind of jet-setting: short little flights where the flight attendant puts a beverage in your hand and then two seconds later takes it away because the plane’s landing. I both love and hate that.

All for books—for these two jobs in my life that involve bookselling. Because even if your job is to write books, or edit books, or buy other people’s books to edit (I do that, too), at some point or another you have to Sell Books by talking about them to complete strangers and somehow you have to do it without coming off like some kind of feverish Mary Kay lady with a big pink case full of crazy.  Though when it comes to this new book I already sound insane just from talking about my butter churns,* which lets me off the sanity hook and thus gives me sort of an advantage.

(*Yes, churns with an s, as in PLURAL churns, because I recently bought another one with the vague idea that when the book comes out next spring I would have a little mini travel churn and put on some kind of jolly one-woman pioneer dairy show. Except I misjudged the size of the new one from the auction listing, and it turns out it’s pretty huge. I mean, not massive, but too big to hide and too ugly to pass as shabby chic. Crap! I need to stay the hell off eBay if I don’t want the apartment to turn into Cracker Barrel.)

Anyway, the trips were good, and I’m told I didn’t sound too kooky, and other authors talked about their books, and they sounded perfectly normal, which gives me hope that even with my churn-hoard I might come off okay.  I met the guy with the amazing-sounding inter-generational fire memoir and the girl with the werewolf YA novel that’s getting a lot of buzz (or growls?) and the Not That Kind of Girl girl (whose book I am DYING to read) and also this woman who I realized I’ve been following on Twitter for months, and you’re clicking on all these links, right?

Now it’s good to be home. And finally the weather is Octoberlike and not that creepy slow-bake psuedo-summer business. It took only a few short weeks from the end of reasonable sandal weather (early September) for my pedicure to completely devolve and my feet to shift to winter mode and become sad gnarled Shetland-pony-hoof appendages, so when the weather makes everyone break out the flip-flops again this late in the season, I highly resent it. Now everything is cool and crisp and soon I will be swaddled in a safe cocoon of knits from which I’ll occasionally stick out a bare hand just to grab a mug of hot cider, and all will be well.

You know, as long as I am talking about seasons: now that the book is finished, I have some time to blog again (and eventually the poundy.com blog and feed will be redirected to wendymcclure.net, so I’ll be blogging in one place). But The Wilder Life doesn’t come out for another five months. While it’s a big part of my life, I’ll have plenty of opportunity to talk about it in the new year, so until then, this blog doesn’t have to be—and perhaps shouldn’t be—All Little House Shenanigans, All The Time. (Though before the fall is over I really ought to post about the green pumpkin pie I baked a few weeks ago, just like Ma in The Long Winter).  But in the meantime, I’m curious to know what you’d like to read about on this site. Should I write about the writing life, exploring my weird little interests, the sadness of hotel rooms, what?

But I should add that I haven’t really been compelled to write about fat and body image these days. Maybe it’s just the years passing, but the things that used to get me worked up just don’t anymore, and I’m afraid that with work and writing I haven’t been keeping up with the new stuff, which means I don’t know that TV one show with the fat people, or that other show with the other fat people, or that thing that Beth Ditto did that was cool. This is not to say that I’m “done” with the subject, but if there are peaks and valleys, I’m definitely in a valley. It’s like with Chris and metal. He doesn’t feel the need to keep up with the latest  Iron Maiden or Electric Wizard or Bone Awl like he used to, though he’ll still promise to check out a new album if someone else tells him it totally rules hell.

Look, I even a made a tacky web poll where you can vote! I’m just curious.

Finally, a reminder: next Friday night—Jen Lancaster! Claire Zulkey! Stacey Ballis! Me! At the Book Cellar in Lincoln Square, being Witty Women Writers wittingly weading our work! Come say hello.