Monday, July 09, 2007

I Arrive

Now I have a long way to go in my writing career before I am where I want to be, but I've at least captured the attention of that august publication, Western Hills Press, serving all of Bridgetown, Westwood, and parts of greater Cheviot. I have Arrived. An MFA, publication with Random House, appointment as a college teacher-- this impressed absolutely no one in the old neighborhood. But...the Western Hills Press! Well! My mother's phone rang for days.

The Press ran a very kind piece on Saturday's Waldenbooks signing for Drink to the Lasses, several pages after an article headlined "Covedale Neighbors Don't Want White Castle" (Resident quote: "We don't want anybody to have a reason to be out on the street at 3 o'clock in the morning to get a 50-cent hamburger.") There is a picture of me smiling at an ad for the St. John's Festival and Chicken Dinner.

It was an opportunity to lay aside The Bride and become The Author for a couple hours. I was still, however, very heavily drugged.

The signing was populated by many generous people, including three of my grade school teachers who probably came just to see for themselves that I had not, contrary to the very highest expectations, wound up in jail.

This is Mrs. Akers and Miss Krummen. Like all grade school teachers, they do not have first names. Mrs. Akers taught fifth grade language arts and groomed me as a God, Flag and Country speech contest candidate until I got all the way to sectionals and blanked out in the middle of a paragraph about Ronald Reagan. Miss Krummen yelled at me once for talking in church. All seems forgiven, however, now that I'm in the Big Time.

Miss Woods, who taught me in first grade, was there, too, and shook my hand, saying, "Congratulations. I hope your spelling has improved."

The audience also included two nuns, one baby, a cousin five times removed, the people who used to live across the cul-de-sac from us, and a guy who picked up the book and attempted to hand me a roll of coins. A particular favorite was Mark The Reader, who stood in line very, very patiently while I conducted twenty-minute conversations with each customer, all of a high literary nature ("Did you hear Father David isn't pastor there any more? Oh, and Anglea Turchiano, did she have the baby yet?...Twins! Which reminds me, are you still in touch with...")

There was even time for a flashback photo:

Allow me to direct your attention to the silently judgmental display book pointing directly at my head:

It was time to refill my government-controlled, highly potent OCD meds. I took my lovely little amber bottle to the brand-new chain drugstore down the street.

The pharmacist read off the long list of potential interactions, then looked up at me and said, "Weren't you in the Western Hills Press?"

violently colliding worlds at


willow3x3 said...

Absolutely LOVE your hair in these shots MB. Will this be the wedding style? (I hate to remind you that you will need a hairdo for the wedding when you are still in "author mode," but since I am still unmarried it is easy for me to torment.)

MB said...

Thanks, willow! Hot rollers are a beautiful thing. Takes a while to do it this way, though. But the Bridal Hair will be very similar :)

red pill junkie said...

"Allow me to direct your attention to the silently judgmental display book pointing directly at my head:"

Not only that, but the number 13 appears DIRECTLY behind you, and the book about Cincinatti cemeteries is displayed alongside your essay "What my Father does at work" :-(

But hey, nothing a few rabbit feet can cure!

Anonymous said...

You look great! When I go visit my dad in Cincy, maybe you will have another book signing. OCD meds? Don't stress. They brought me the wrong dress an hour before mine! Correct style, 8 sizes too big! But we got the right one 10 min. before the ceremony..otherwise I would have had the clothespins they use when you try them on holding it up!
Do you know they make a Mint Julip face mask? Saw one today at CVS and had to giggle.

AlaskaMe said...

I don't know rabbits feet weren't so lucky for the rabbit and have you seen that new commercial were they put them back on the rabbit - still the pictures makes me wonder what section of the store they had her signing in.

Heather said...

Great eyebrows!

MB said...

Not only have I SEEN, the Mint Julep Mask, I've USED it. It smelled like sulfur and I would still put it in my mouth before another actual mint julep.

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