Quite the Party

It came, I showed up, and I had a blast.

Remember the song “Anticipation?” That could be my theme song for the past week. I had very little to do to get ready for the launch party, but I was running on adrenaline all the same, jumping from one tiny task to another, always with that little wave of nerves running along through my brain. I knew the party would be great, but did that stop me from some worrying, some fretting? Of course not. Because, you know, what would be the fun in that?

So, getting to Books Inc yesterday and getting this set up…

 was a big relief. And let me tell you, if you live in the Bay Area and haven’t tried Kara’s Cupcakes yet, consider this a serious recommendation. I tried a couple of other places, and I was overwhelmed by the too-sweetness and underwhelmed by the flavor and texture. Kara’s were incredible…yes, very sweet, but seriously intense on flavor and the cake part was just YUMMY. 🙂

From then on, as people started to show up, and I got hug after hug from friends and family, things just got better and better. The manager at Books Inc, Eric, was incredibly nice and seriously helpful from the time I introduced my self after one of Jennifer Laughran’s NYMBC events, and he made yesterday go so smoothly, I can’ t thank him enough. 

And, yes, I did get up in front of everyone and talk. I told the story of how I got the chance to write the book. And then, after Eric reminded me and my wonderful critique group got things started, I answered a few questions. Here’s the proof:

And I signed.

Okay, I’ll say it–what a rush! I thought I’d be seriously nervous, and there was definitely some of that, but I just kept seeing face after face of friends and writers, and I just kept smiling and writing. No writer’s cramp this time around, but, boy, did my face hurt by the end.  Worth every bit of the ache!

My brother-in-law, who is a phenomenal photographer (and, yes, you’ve heard me talk about him before as my computer guru–I married into a very talented family!), took all the pictures. Including this one that I really, really wanted to get:

There they are. The incredible women I’ve been critiquing with for years. Terri Thayer, Jana McBurney-Lin, Beth Proudfoot, and Cyndy Furze. I’ve know Cyndy since before my son was born, and I’m pretty sure he’s now taller than both of us! These writers are the reason, not only that I wrote The Writing & Critique Group Survival Guide, but that I continue learning and growing with all the rest of my writing as well. They more than “rock;” they are my rocks. They’re why I not only believe in the power of a strong critique group, but why I know it with absolute certainty. They’re why I can say to any writer I meet, “This is what you want in your life.”

It was a wonderful day. I know 2010 is going to bring me more incredible moments, and I can’t predict any of them. This party, though, was the best day I could have asked for, to share my happiness and celebration with the people who mean so much to me.

I wish you all a moment like this and the feelings that come along for the ride.


  1. You sound a little bit happy!!

    I’m glad it was such a wonderful day. How great your whole critique group could make it — they must have been pretty proud and happy, too — and you got that great picture!


  2. And you look a little bit happy! I’m happy for you. Giving away Survival Guide on my blog today. Lots of last minute entries. Interest is up!

    Noonish – your time.


    • beckylevine says:

      Thanks, Joyce! I’ve been checking out the comments–I think everybody should do contests this way. You telling them to tell you how much they want the book is making ME feel really good! 🙂


  3. jama says:

    Yay! Glad you had a great launch party. Love the pic of your critique group! And yes, I’ve heard of Kara’s Cupcakes — just wish we lived closer!


  4. Mary Ann says:

    That’s fabulous, Becky! Congrats! Hope to do it soon, myself 🙂


  5. Kelly Fineman says:

    How wonderful! CONGRATULATIONS!

    (Any cupcakes left over?)


    • beckylevine says:

      Thanks, Kelly! And, yes, there were a half dozen or so left–I snagged a couple! I never did get a chocolate one, though, which probably means another trip to Kara’s! Oh, darn.


  6. You captured the day perfectly. I loved seeing how happy you looked. The joy was apparent with every word you spoke.


    • beckylevine says:

      Susan, I WAS just so happy. Thank you! Now, of course, dealing with everything that piled up, but totally worth it!


  7. Jenn Hubbard says:

    Lovely! Glad you had so much fun, and that your crit group was there!


  8. Claudine says:

    I can feel the “happy” through my monitor. Great article of what seems a memorable day! Love the crit group pic.
    Yay, you!


  9. Jana says:

    It was a wonderful day–I’m so glad I got to be a part of it. Here’s to many, many more parties just like it.


  10. Sweet, Becky! The photo of you and your happy, proud critique group made me flash to the future when someone from our group will get published (and I know we all will eventually!) How wonderful to have a great support team to celebrate with!


    • beckylevine says:

      Thanks, Constance! It will happen, and you’ll feel as good as I did. My friend Terri Thayer said that she got to find out how much easier (and a different kind of fun) someone else’s launch is! I know hers was a blast and absolutely no stress for me! 🙂


  11. P. J. Hoover says:

    What an awesome party you had! I love it and wish I could have been there!


    • beckylevine says:

      I wish you could have been there, too–just like I wish I could be at your book parties. Someday, the internet will be able to make all that happen!


  12. How exciting! Looks like it was a great day — congratulations!


  13. Vivian says:

    What awesome photos! You look so happy and like a super star. I’m so glad you had a great celebration. Congrats!


  14. Amy G. says:

    You look radiant, and I can feel your joy from 3000 miles away. And what a wonderful photo that is of your group! Congratulations!


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